Today, one of the largest infrastructure undertakings in The City of Calgary's history will be open to traffic. The early opening of the Calgary Road was celebrated yesterday by Premier Danielle Smith as well as other provincial ministers
"I’m proud to announce that the final section was completed on budget and months ahead of schedule," Devin Dreeshen, Minister of Transportation and Economic Corridors said.
The province underlined that the ring road is a critical component to growing economic corridors in Alberta and Western Canada, as it connects the Trans-Canada Highway to the east and west, and the QEII Highway and Highway 2 to the north and south. The Ring Road is designed to accommodate up to 100,000 vehicles a day.
Opening the ring road means new travel options for Calgarians, drawing traffic away from heavily travelled and congested roads such as the Deerfoot Trail, 16th Avenue, Glenmore Trail and Sarcee Trail. For commercial carriers, the ring road provides an efficient bypass route, saving time and money to deliver and ship goods and services.
The 101-kilometre free-flowing Calgary Ring Road, which includes 197 new bridges and 48 interchanges. Construction began in late 1999 under former Premier Ralph Klein. However, discussions on a ring road around Calgary began as early as the 1950's. In the late 1970s, under former premier Peter Lougheed, high-level planning and land acquisition started and a transportation utility corridor was established to make the Calgary Ring Road a reality.
"With this final section completed, travelling just got a little easier for families and for workers. This will not only benefit Calgarians and residents in the metro region, it will provide a boost to our economy, as goods can be transported more easily across our province," Premier Smith said.
Greg Clark, Chair of the Calgary Metropolitan Region Board added that this key artery will not only improve the quality of life for the residents of the region.
"This is an exciting step forward for the Calgary Metropolitan Region. It is also a key economic enabler and we are thrilled to see its completion.”
According to the province, stretched into a single lane, the highway is 1,304 kilometres long, the distance from Calgary to Winnipeg. Other sections of the Ring Road opened in 2009, 2013, 2020 and 2023.
The West Calgary Ring Road is the final piece of the Ring Road project.
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