Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization

Please click on one of the following items for further information regarding the Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization Project (the "Streetscape Revitalization Project"):

Streetscape Project - Summary and Overview

Construction work for the Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization Project is projected to begin in Spring 2018. This project will involve the reconstruction and beautification of Johnston Road’s streetscape, including new sidewalks, convenient crosswalks, rain gardens and treed seating areas, to name a few exciting upgrades that will take place.

This project will improve accessibility, safety and ease of use, and revitalize Johnston Road as White Rock’s commercial and cultural ‘high street’ as well as the gateway into our beautiful City by the Sea!

We are striving to minimize public impact over the long term and will take this opportunity to simultaneously upgrade the critical water, sewer and street infrastructure on these two blocks as well, which will help increase capacity and improve the reliability of the existing older watermains, sanitary sewers and storm sewers to better serve this growing neighbourhood.

The Streetscape Revitalization Project runs along the length of Johnston Road, and is bounded by North Bluff Road to the north, and Thrift Avenue to the south as depicted below:

Streetscape Revitalization Project - Background and Public Consultation

The City is committed to supporting businesses in White Rock by creating opportunities through capital project investments that will continue to attract residents and visitors throughout our beautiful seaside community. An area of focus for the City is the upper Johnston Road area between North Bluff Road and Thrift Avenue. As the commercial and cultural heart of the Town Centre, the revitalization of this area will improve the vibrancy, functionality, and walkability of the Johnston Road corridor.

Building on past Johnston Road studies and consultations, the City re-engaged the community to develop a collaborative Concept Development Plan for Johnston Road beginning in 2016, and hired Studio Parsons and ETA Landscape Architecture to assist with this collaborative streetscape design process. With input from the community and business stakeholders, a concept design was developed and selected by Council in April 2017. 

Public Workshop



A public workshop was held on February 10, 2016 at the White Rock Community Centre from 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. Preliminary results from the above survey were presented and participants of the interactive three-hour workshop were asked to:

  • Share what makes Johnston Road unique;
  • Discuss aspirations and obstacles to street improvements; and,
  • Develop preliminary principles to guide the work.

You can review the workshop presentation at the following link.

Community Survey

Thank you to all the residents, property owners and business owners who responded to the City’s survey. Survey results were presented at a Council meeting on July 25, 2016.  You can review the Community Survey results report here.

Concept Options - Open House

On December 8, 2016 the City held a Concept Options Open House which showcased three concept designs prepared for the revitalization of Johnston Road, from North Bluff Road to Roper Avenue. The designs were based on the feedback provided through the public workshop, community survey, and business consultation which took place earlier in 2016.

The display boards were also available for viewing at City Hall between December 9, 2016 and December 23, 2016. After reviewing community feedback on the options, staff reported to Council on a preferred hybrid option.

You can view the Event Boards (and the proposed concept options) at the following link.

Concept Design Selection

On April 24, 2017, Council selected the hybrid concept option presented by staff that combined elements of Option #2 (“Arts and Culture” theme) with the essential layout of Option #3 (“Green/Sustainability” theme), as well as laning and turning movement adjustments recommended by traffic consultants. Specific elements which are included in the hybrid concept include:

  • Enhanced and enlarged boulevard planting areas to offset the potential need for tree removal
  • Rain gardens at the curb edge with silva (soil) cells and stormwater detention
  • Café zone for retail, restaurants and amenities
  • Pedestrian scale lighting with hanging baskets
  • Seating pockets
  • Utility corridor adjacent to curb edge (allows for easy exiting from on-street parking)
  • Mid-block pedestrian crossings
  • West Coast contemporary character with emphasis on natural materials

Following concept selection, the project advanced to the detailed design stage, with McElhanney Consulting Services chosen to prepare the civil construction drawings. You can review this report (page 112) at the following link.

Public Tender

The project issued Tenders on BC Bid to attract qualified General Contractors to bid on the phase 1 and phase 2 (North Bluff to Thrift) of Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization Project. The Tenders were also place on the City’s website on the Tenders and RFPs page.

The tender is anticipated to close on February 9, 2018.

The scope of the project includes upgrades such as:

  • Sidewalk replacements to improve accessibility, remove trip hazards, and provide smooth surface for walkers, strollers and wheelchairs
  • Removal and replacement of boulevard trees, and installation of Silva cells to improve soil volume and long-term viability of the tree canopy
  • Decorative mid-block pedestrian crosswalks, with improved visibility for pedestrian safety
  • Better bus shelter locations for improved transit service and to avoid back-ups into intersections
  • Rain garden areas that include planting and irrigation
  • New bicycle racks, seating areas, and garbage/recycling receptacles
  • New LED decorative style street lighting (including hanging baskets with irrigation)
  • Sidewalk drainage improvements including storm sewer upgrades
  • Watermain, replacement

Streetscape Revitalization Project - FAQ

Please click on one of the following frequently asked questions for answers relating to the Streetscape Revitalization Project:

What is the purpose of the Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization Project?
The City is committed to supporting businesses in White Rock by creating opportunities through investments in capital projects that will continue to attract residents and visitors throughout our beautiful seaside community.

An area of focus for the City is the Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization as it provides an opportunity to revitalize the vibrancy and functionality of Johnston Road as the commercial and cultural heart of the Town Centre.

What is the duration of the Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization Project?
This capital project is scheduled to start in March of 2018 and be completed in October 2018.

Who do I call if I have concerns during the construction process?
The City will make every effort to minimize the impact of construction on your daily routine and/or business. During construction, we will do our best to address your concerns, so please bring any immediate concerns you may have to Engineering and Municipal Operations by calling 604-541-2181 or emailing Operations@whiterockcity.ca.

How will the City manage traffic and lanes?
At least two lanes will be open on Johnston Road during construction. On-site traffic control personnel will ensure the safety of road and sidewalk users. Information about any road closures will be communicated in advance.

Will the construction work be phased?

Yes, the Construction activity will be completed in phases to minimize disruptions to businesses and residents.  

How will I be able to access residences or businesses during the construction phase?

Access to residences and businesses will be maintained. Where sidewalks are being reconstructed, detours will be in effect for pedestrians to ensure public safety during construction.

The City will make every effort to minimize the impact of construction on your daily routine and/or business. During construction, we will do our best to address your concerns, so please bring any immediate concerns you may have to Engineering and Municipal Operations by calling 604-541-2181 or emailing Operations@whiterockcity.ca.

How will you manage noise associated with construction?
We apologize in advance for any inconvenience that comes with construction of a major capital project and appreciate your cooperation and patience. During construction, there will be some noise as crews work on portions of the road surface. And, crews will be working Monday to Friday from 7:30am to 7:00pm, with extended hours during evenings and weekends, as needed.

We appreciate your cooperation and patience as we work to complete the Johnston Road Streetscape Revitalization Project. We will make every effort to minimize the impact of construction on your daily routine. During construction, please bring any immediate concerns you may have to Engineering and Municipal Operations at 604-541-2181 or Operations@whiterockcity.ca.

Streetscape Revitalization Project - Further Information

If you have any questions or comments regarding the Streetscape Revitalization Project that is not addressed here, please contact us at imagine@whiterockcity.ca or directly email Carl Isaak, Manager of Planning at cisaak@whiterockcity.ca.

You can also stay informed on City related activities and news by following our social media channels and/ or signing up for the City’s e-newsletter!