Slideshow: Behind the Canada line

Text by Jessica Werb Photo essay by Dina Goldstein Where traffic once flowed unhindered downtown and along Cambie Street, drivers are now confronted by an ever-changing spectacle of menacing machines, gaping pits and orange-clad workers. Commuters are the rats caught in this maze. They awake every morning determined to get past the chaos, longing for the days when “cut and cover” was what they did when serving pie. It seems an impossible task: to tunnel through 19 kilometres of hard earth. Yet they are doing it, despite the cursing commuters, befuddled cyclists and pissed-off businesses. What used to be a 15-minute drive is now an excruciating 45-minute ordeal. There is nothing to do but cede to the signs urging STOP or, if you’re lucky, SLOW. It’s ironic that what promises to render our city more accessible come 2009 has caused our worlds to shrink. Cross-town invitations are declined. Restaurants are avoided for fear of crossing the dreaded line. But we remain patient, willing to wait this thing out. Because we know there’s light at the end of the tunnel.