While Berth 1 at Langdale terminal is closed for the replacement of one of the wingwalls, BC Ferries staff will strengthen the ramp to withstand earthquakes, assistant vice-president Jeanette McKay announced.
"An engineering analysis of the structure and soils supporting the foundations revealed that the ramp could be at risk during even a moderate tremor," said McKay. "By doing the work now, when the berth is closed, we will be able to carry out much of the upgrade without disruption to travellers."
Berth 1 has been closed since Jan. 17 to replace the wingwall - an outer section that holds the ferry in place when it docks
- and had been scheduled to reopen March 17. With the seismic upgrade, the closure has been extended one month. Had the seismic upgrade been done separately, the berth would have been out of commission an extra two months.
The ramp consists of six spans supported by three frames. The retrofit work includes installing reinforced concrete beams and buried steel cables interconnecting the structure's footings, strengthening columns and foundations, and installing girder restrainers.
During the spring break weekends - March 16 to 19 and March 23 to 26 - Berth 1 will temporarily reopen to accommodate anticipated heavy traffic. The berth will permanently reopen on April 19, before the Easter weekend. Construction is scheduled to be completed May 12; however, travellers will not be affected during the final stages of the work.