Above: Geotechnical work for the new Johnson St. Bridge was underway in October of 2012 as city staff worked through competing bids for the construction project that will start soon. Rumours of the imminent demise of the project are unfounded.
Op-eds in the Victoria Times Colonist have played out some of the tit-for-tat around Victoria's Johnson St. Bridge project. Suffice to say the latest piece, similar to other agenda driven commentary, makes scant use of the facts. The Request for Proposals process is now complete and technical evaluations are taking place that will inform a recommendation to Victoria City Council which, myths notwithstanding, will make the final decision on the award of a construction contract.
Here, for your reading pleasure (or otherwise), are some rejoinders to the last op-ed on process and product.
Critics will find what they like and leave out the facts that don't support the storyline.
Miami is at the very low end of earthquake risks and codes will be significantly different. The seismic resilience of our own bridge is at the highest end and the cost differential for our project is only the incremental difference between our lifeline bridge designed to withstand an earthquake at an 8.5 magnitude (to offer to most commonly understood reference), over a less robust 6.5 event, quite different from a concept of bringing a bridge with no seismic resilience to even a modest, if not full code compliant structure. The city settled on the maximum code available to meet a variety of objectives. The cost comparisons on that element of the project are not credible.