It wasn’t exactly the answer the City of Langley was looking for.
The mayor and council received a response from the program manager of the Roberts Bank Railway Corridor to a Feb. 12 letter in which the City demanded RBRC fulfill its commitment to install three electronic warning signs in the community.
The signs, which were included as part of a project that saw a trio of railway overpasses built in Langley Township and on the border between Langley City and Surrey, have so far not materialized. Their purpose is alert drivers to the approach of a train and allow them to alter their route accordingly.
In the letter, Robin Johnston states that when the project was put out to tender in the fall of 2014, the bids it received were well over the $3.8 million figure budgeted.
“The intention of the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor Program is that the Rail Crossing Information project proceed subject to funding availability,” Johnston wrote.
The response stands in contrast to a promise made by Cliff Stewart, vice-president of infrastructure at Port Metro Vancouver, who told members of the Greater Langley Chamber of Commerce at their February meeting that the signs will be installed by the end of this year.
Councillor Dave Hall expressed disappointment at the letter, saying when the City committed to the overpass project it was with the belief there would be a warning system put in place for vehicles.
Rail traffic through the community is expected to double by 2021, with up to 38 trains passing through on any given day.
This ties up vehicle traffic for several minutes at a time. The three busiest roads in the core Langley commercial area, Fraser Highway, 200 Street and Highway 10 (Langley Bypass), all have at-grade rail crossings.
The Township of Langley has also written a letter to RBRC program officials, requesting that the four signs promised to that community be installed.