COURTENAY, B.C. Starting Wednesday, the intersection at 5th Street and Fitzgerald Avenue will be closed for up to three weeks, depending on weather.

The closure will allow workers to install new sidewalks, narrow crosswalk crossings, and replace the asphalt.

Businesses will remain open and the contractor will ensure clear pedestrian access to all businesses on 5th Street during this phase of street improvements, according to a City of Courtenay release.

The 400-block of 5th Street between England and Fitzgerald Avenues will be open to vehicle traffic, with a turnaround area.

Motorists are being asked to obey detour signs and traffic personnel, and take alternate routes during this period to avoid delays.

The entire street will reopen to all modes of traffic in October.

Updates on the closure will be provided through the City’s website, social media, and the subscriber-based e-newsletter.

Since May, crews have upgraded the water, stormwater and sewer system in the area, upgraded sidewalks, introduced tactile strips for the visually-impaired, and have added new curbing to make way for rain gardens and protected bike lanes to be introduced in the coming weeks.

Once complete in October, 5th Street will include:

  • two freshly paved vehicle lanes;
  • bike lanes physically separated from vehicle traffic;
  • improved accessibility for strollers, scooters, and wheelchairs;
  • parking between Fitzgerald and Harmston, and alternating parking and rain gardens throughout the remainder of the corridor; and
  • innovative stormwater management to improve drainage.