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Highway 1 at Falls Creek in Fraser Canyon reopens to two-way traffic

Badly damaged in November 2021 atmospheric river, site has been open to single lane traffic only
Highway 1 at Falls Creek (Jackass Mountain) south of Spences Bridge will be open to two-way traffic as of Dec. 15, shortening travel time along the Fraser-Thompson corridor. (Photo credit: Ministry of Transportation)

As of Dec. 15, travellers along Highway 1 through the Fraser Canyon will be saving some time, thanks to a return to two-way traffic at Falls Creek (Jackass Mountain), 55 kilometres south of Spences Bridge.

Highway 1 through the Fraser-Thompson corridor was hit hard by the atmospheric river that swept through the area in November 2021. Eighteen sites on the highway were affected between Spences Bridge and Hope, with four sites — including Falls Creek — requiring extensive temporary repairs before the highway could reopen.

READ MORE: Highway 1 through canyon scheduled to reopen mid-January

More than 150 workers, using 80 pieces of equipment, moved more than 150,000 cubic metres of gravel, rock, and other material to repair and reopen Highway 1 to vehicle traffic on Jan. 14, 2022 (Lytton to Spences Bridge), and Jan. 24, 2022 (Lytton to Boston Bar).

A temporary single-lane bridge has been in place at Falls Creek since January 2022, with vehicles travelling in either direction having to follow a pilot car; an arrangement which often led to long waits for travellers. Construction of a new bridge has been ongoing for more than a year, and the new three-lane, permanent Falls Creek bridge will be completed next year.

READ MORE: Permanent repairs starting soon on Highway 1 through Canyon

In the meantime, the reopening of the highway to two-way traffic will not only make travel faster, it will increase safety along the Fraser-Thompson corridor.

“Getting to this phase of the Falls Creek project marks a significant achievement in our recovery from the 2021 atmospheric river and our efforts to enhance the safety and reliability of Highway 1,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, in a statement released on Dec. 13.

“Over the last two years, I have seen the remarkable dedication of our ministry staff, contractors, and Indigenous and municipal leaders who have come together to support the recovery from the unprecedented floods. Our government is committed to rebuilding safe and efficient infrastructure that can withstand future climate events.”

Jordan Spinks, Chief of Kanaka Bar Indian Band, said in the statement that “Kanaka Bar Band and its members are excited to hear that Highway 1 will be opening back to two lanes. It has been a long two years for our community since the atmospheric river event and how the aftermath impacted our daily commute.

“We have had a great relationship with the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure and the Falls Creek Alliance team, and are grateful for the collaboration and information-sharing during the highway repairs. We look forward to some normalcy in our daily commute and a continued working relationship with all involved with the Falls Creek Highway Project.”

The new bridge will enhance traffic flow and is designed for resilience against severe weather conditions. Drivers can expect reduced speed limits until construction is complete.

Work to repair two other badly-damaged sections of Highway 1 — at Tank Hill and at Nicomen, both north of Lytton — is ongoing.

To learn more about the Falls Creek Highway Project, go to

Barbara Roden

About the Author: Barbara Roden

I joined Black Press in 2012 working the Circulation desk of the Ashcroft-Cache Creek Journal and edited the paper during the summers until February 2016.
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