2-way traffic to Tofino set to resume after years of improvement work on Hwy 4

Improvements to the Kennedy Hill section of Highway 4 have been underway for years and the 1.5-kilometre stretch is expected to start flowing in two directions again in the new year. (Facebook/EAC Hwy 4 Kennedy Hill Project Updates - image credit)
Improvements to the Kennedy Hill section of Highway 4 have been underway for years and the 1.5-kilometre stretch is expected to start flowing in two directions again in the new year. (Facebook/EAC Hwy 4 Kennedy Hill Project Updates - image credit)

It's about to get easier to travel by vehicle to the west coast of Vancouver Island, according to the B.C. government.

After more than three years of construction on the Kennedy Hill section of Highway 4, which connects numerous First Nations and the coastal communities of Tofino and Ucluelet to the rest of the island, two-way traffic is expected to flow again in early January.

Highway 4 is the only east-west corridor on Vancouver Island that services the region.

In a news release Tuesday, the province said the project is more than 90 per cent complete and, weather permitting, both lanes will open early in the new year.

Since the project began, rock blasting and construction has forced regular day and nighttime closures.


"This is a major milestone of the project to upgrade the 1.5-kilometre Kennedy Hill section to a safer, more reliable road for residents, tourists and truckers," said the release.

"The road has been straightened and flattened, with better visibility, wider travel lanes and shoulders, and new roadside barriers between the highway and Kennedy Lake."

According to the Ministry of Transportation, when both lanes are open, traffic impacts will be reduced to nighttime closures and minor interruptions during the day toward total project completion by spring.

The price tag for the project is approximately $54 million.

For the latest on highway conditions and road closures province-wide, visit DriveBC.ca.