British Columbia provincial highway 99

From Academic Kids

British Columbia provincial highway 99 is the major nouth-south artery through the Greater Vancouver Regional District. The number of this highway is derived from the old U.S. Highway 99, which the highway originally connected with at the Canada-U.S. boundary. The highway currently connects with Interstate 5 at the international border.

This highway was originally designated '99' in 1942, and it originally shared an alignment with Highway 1 from Surrey to Vancouver. The current freeway alignment of Highway 99, between 8th Avenue in White Rock and the Fraser River between Richmond and Vancouver opened in 1962. Between 1964 and 1973, the freeway alignment of Highway 99 was designated Highway 499.

In 1957, the northern end of Highway 99 was moved from downtown Vancouver, across the Lions Gate Bridge and west to the village of Horseshoe Bay, following Marine Drive through West Vancouver. Highway 99 was re-aligned to the Upper Levels Highway and extended to Britannia Beach one year later, being extended further to Squamish in 1959, and then to Pemberton in 1966. Finally, in 1992, the just-paved Duffey Lake Road between Pemberton and Lillooet was made part of Highway 99, and the section of Highway 12 between Lillooet and Highway 97, was re-numbered 99.

Contents

Route details

Vancouver-Blaine Freeway

The total length of Highway 99 from the international border to the Highway 97 junction is 409 km. In the south, Highway 99 begins at the border crossing at the Peace Arch, with a four-lane freeway configuration. The Vancouver-Blaine Freeway, as the route is locally known, travels through Surrey 12 km due northwest from the border, through four interchanges, and then turns west for 4 km before reaching the junction with Highway 91, marking the highway's entry into the Corporation of Delta. 4 km west, Highway 99 reaches its junction with Highway 10. 8 km later, Highway 99 reaches a junction with Highway 17. Another 2 km northwest, Highway 99 crosses into Richmond through the George Massey Tunnel under the south arm of the Fraser River.

Through Richmond, Highway 99 travels 7 km north, through one interchange, to the junction with the other end of Highway 91. Another 4 km northwest, the southern freeway section of Highway 99 ends as the highway crosses the north arm of the Fraser River, over the Oak Street bridge, into Vancouver.

The Busy Six-Lane Streets of Vancouver

The 30 km-long route through Vancouver starts off going for 1 km north on Oak Street to the intersection with West 70th Avenue. Highway 99 then goes west on West 70th for 1 km, and then turns right onto Granville Street. Highway 99 takes Granville Street north for 7 km, crossing over False Creek into the downtown core. Highway 99 goes northeast by way of Seymour Street through downtown for 1 km (southbound it uses Howe Street), then turns northwest onto Georgia Street for 2 km before entering Stanley Park. Highway 99 proceeds north for 4 km through Stanley Park and over the Lions Gate Bridge into West Vancouver at Marine Drive.

The Trans Canada Highway/Upper Levels Highway

In West Vancouver, Highway 99 goes west on Marine Drive for 1 km, then turns right onto Taylor Way for another 1 km, finally reaching its junction with Highway 1. Highway 99 shares the Upper Levels Highway with Highway 1 for 12 km west before diverging from Highway 1 just before the B.C. Ferry terminal at Horseshoe Bay.

Sea-to-Sky Highway and Beyond

"The Sea-to-Sky Highway" is the popular name for the two-lane section of Highway 99 just north of Horseshoe Bay. The highway has a checkered history; as a single-lane undivided highway with no outside barrier (the highway is built on a steep cliff overlooking a body of water), many motorists have lost their lives on it due to inclement weather, poor visibility, or drunk driving. As part of the 2010 Winter Olympics bid, the provincial government has authorized refitting the highway to accommodate greater traffic loads, hopefully widening the highway and placing a concrete divider.

From Horseshoe Bay, the highway travels along the coast of Howe Sound for 12 km to Lions Bay, north for another 21 km to Britannia Beach, and north for 11 more km to Squamish, at the head of Howe Sound. From Squamish, it is another 58 km north to Whistler, and then to Pemberton 32 km later, where the Sea-to-Sky Highway ends and Duffy Lake Road begins. 99 km northeast, Highway 99 reaches the junction with Highway 12 at Lillooet, and then goes northeast for another 75 km to its northern terminus at its junction with Highway 97, just north of Cache Creek.

List of Exits

The following is a listing of all the exits on the limited-access section of Highway 99 through Vancouver, Richmond, Delta, and Surrey.

Surrey

1 Beach Rd.

2A, 2B 8 Ave., King George Highway

8A (only available to Hwy 99 southbound) 152 St. south

8B (only available to Hwy 99 southbound) 32 Ave.

10 Hwy 99A/King George Highway

Delta

16 Highway 91

20 Ladner Trunk Rd.

28 Highway 17

29 (only available to Hwy 99 southbound) River Rd.

Richmond

32 Steveston Hwy.

36 (only available to Hwy 99 northbound) Westminster Hwy.

37 Highway 91/East-West Connector eastbound

38 (only available to Hwy 99 southbound) Shell Rd.

39 (only available to Hwy 99 northbound) Bridgeport Rd.

39A (only available to Hwy 99 southbound) No. 4 Rd.

39B (only available to Hwy 99 southbound) Sea Island Wy.

Vancouver

41A/B (only available to Hwy 99 northbound) Southwest Marine Dr.

...at this point, the freeway becomes Oak Street in Vancouver.

Trivia

  • The same stretch of "Sea to Sky" Highway is used in countless automobile commercials in Canada, the United States, and abroad.
  • The George Massey Tunnel connecting Richmond and Delta is the lowest portion of road below sea level in all of Canada.


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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