Fast Layne stopped traffic in Maple Ridge.
Angry commuters were stopped on 132nd Avenue during their morning commute on Wednesday for filming near Maple Ridge Park.
“They had cars backed up through the traffic circle and way past Fern [Crescent], and I could hear people honking,” said Kristina Brown, who lives in the area but was walking past the traffic jam.
It was approximately 8:30 a.m. and people were on their way to work or dropping their kids off at school.
The crew was filming the Disney TV series Fast Layne. It is a children’s show, and all of the episodes will be based in Maple Ridge.
Brown told the flag person that by moving their traffic stops just slightly, just east of 233 Street and just west of Balsam Street, they could have allowed traffic to detour around their shoot.
The flagger told her he was doing what he was told, and taking all the heat from motorists.
Instead of a detour, the shoot blocked off all the traffic coming to or from Fern Crescent, which is the only access to the area.
“It was really poor planning,” said Brown, a candidate for Maple Ridge council in 2014.
“I do support filming in our community, and there are people who make their living in the industry, but they need to be more accountable.”
She estimates the traffic stoppage was only 10-15 minutes, but it was enough to make drivers irate.
“At that time of the day, it shouldn’t have happened at all. If they did it at 9:30 a.m., then there would have been a lot fewer cars.”
She posted a message on the Silver Valley Neighbourhoods Facebook page, and Scott John remarked that film crews had also blocked the road on Tuesday just as school was getting out, and it was closed for about 15 minutes.
Brown complained to the city, and was told the road is not supposed to be completely blocked.
Fred Armstrong, with the city, confirmed that the municipal film liaison had been in touch with the crew “to reiterate the need to ensure that the streets are clear for residents, especially in the morning and evening when people are getting to work and school.”
Thursday was the last day of the filming.
In September, the city imposed a moratorium on filming in the downtown after complaints about crews blocking access to businesses, not cleaning up streets after filming, and movie vehicles taking customer parking spots.
The moratorium on filming was lifted Oct. 31.
In 2015, the City of Pitt Meadows placed a moratorium on filming in Osprey Village after businesses and residents there complained about disruptions and parking.
According to a city staff report, the 240th Street road right of way is earmarked in the major corridor network plan as a possible bridge connection, providing a second access to Silver Valley.