British Columbia provincial highway 97C

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British Columbia provincial highway 97C, the Okanagan Connector, forms part of an important link between the Lower Mainland and the Okanagan valley around Kelowna. It bisects the Coquihalla Highway at Merritt. Highway 97C is a relatively new route, commissioned in 1991.

Route details

Highway 97C, which is 220 km in total length, begins near Westbank and Peachland, at a location on Highway 97 known as Drought Hill. The section of Highway 97C east of Merritt is mostly freeway, with a speed limit of 110 kilometres per hour, and has very few, if any, exits along its route. Highway 97C travels on this freeway 82 km northwest to Aspen Grove, where it converges with Highway 5A. Much of this converged highway is a four-lane highway, though there is a short stretch only two lanes wide. Highways 97C and 5A share the 28 km-long route between Aspen Grove and Lower Nicola, where Highway 5A diverges immediately east and Highway 8 begins. 97C was originally intended to connect with the Coquihalla Highway 5 as a freeway, but this was protested by local residents in Merritt on the grounds that it would take tourists away from the area, and so the freeway remains incomplete to this day.

North of the Highway 8 junction, Highway 97C goes north for 42 km to Logan Lake, then northwest for 57 km to Ashcroft on the Canadian National Railway. Highway 97C then travels 6 km west from Ashcroft to where it converges with Highway 1, which takes Highway 97C north for its final 5 km to its end at Highway 97 in Cache Creek.

Flag of British Columbia Provincial Highways of British Columbia British Columbia highway marker
1 1A 2 3 3A 3B 4 4A 5 5A 6 7
7A 7B 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17
17A 18 19 19A 20 21 22 22A 23 24 26 27
28 29 31 31A 33 35 37 37A 39 41 43 49
52 77 91 91A 93 95 95A 97 97A 97B 97C 99
99A 101 395  
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