GOLDEN –The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure has issued a call for tenders to reconstruct 8.8 kilometres of the Trans-Canada Highway east of Golden, signaling the start of Phase 3 of the Kicking Horse Canyon Project. This section of work is co-funded between the Province of British Columbia and the Government of Canada under the Building Canada Fund, a partnership that is accelerating progress on the national highway to help build a stronger, safer and better country.
The contract will specifically deal with climate change through environmental innovation. There will be an extensive re-naturalization program for the old sections of highway, and the winning bidder will also be encouraged to adopt a number of Climate Action initiatives to maximize the use of recycled asphalt and other construction materials, and reduce emissions with anti-idling policies. The finished product itself will also impact climate change by reducing the load on engines, which then lowers the carbon expenditure of using and maintaining the new facility.
Protection of wildlife is key along this section from the Brake Check to Yoho National Park, and will include special crossings at 10 Mile Hill and Vacation Creek, passage under Mt. Hunter Creek Bridge, ungulate guards on access roads, and wildlife fencing throughout.
Work will also include 4-laning, concrete median barrier to reduce the risk of head on crashes, a new crossing of Mt. Hunter Creek, and 3 metre-wide shoulders to accommodate cyclists. An overpass arrangement at the TCH/Wapta Road/Beaverfoot Road intersection will provide for safer and more effective access.
Construction will begin this fall and is scheduled to be complete in 2011. When completed, 18 continuous kilometers of safe, reliable and modern highway will have been created through some of the most difficult terrain in the province, doubling what was recently completed in Phases 1 and 2.
Future work will occur on the remaining 8.2 kilometres between the junction of Highway 95 in Golden and Yoho Bridge. By the end of the project, 26 kilometres of the Trans Canada Highway will have been upgraded at an estimated total cost of $972 million.