Peace Arch Border Crossing
|Peace Arch Border Crossing|
The Canada Border Inspection Station at the Peace Arch Border Crossing
|Country||United States; Canada|
US Port: 100 Peace Portal Drive, Blaine, WA 98230Canadian Port: 220 Highway 99, Surrey, BC V3S 9N7
|US Phone||(360) 332-8511|
|Hours||Open 24 hours|
The Peace Arch Border Crossing connects the towns of Blaine, Washington and Surrey, British Columbia on the Canada–United States border. The crossing is reached by Interstate 5 on the American side and by British Columbia Highway 99 on the Canadian side. It serves the most direct route between the major cities of Seattle, Washington and Vancouver, British Columbia, and the crossing is the third-busiest on the border with up to 4,800 cars a day. Wait times can be up to four hours; traffic lights exist on the southbound lane, with timers showing when the light will turn green so drivers can turn off engines, visit the park, and use public restrooms. Between the two border stations sits the Peace Arch Park, where visitors are free to cross the border within the confines of the park.
Border inspection services at this crossing long predated the 1921 construction of the Peace Arch. The Canada border station is known as "Douglas", although it has been known over the years as "White Rock" and "Surrey". The US border station is known as "Blaine - Peace Arch".
The crossing is less than a mile west of the Pacific Highway Border Crossing; trucks and other commercial vehicles have been prohibited from using the Peace Arch crossing since the 1970s, in an effort to improve the visitation experience of the park.
Prior to the construction of the Peace Arch, the border region was congested with homes and businesses.The US and Canada built inspection facilities near the border in the early 1900s. The area between the ports of entry was declared a bi-national park in 1939, and the buildings were demolished. The US built a substantial brick border station in 1936, and replaced it in the early 1980s, and again in 2009. Canada built a large wooden border station in 1929, and replaced it with a concrete border station in 1952. It was expanded and modified substantially over the years until a new border station was built in 2010.