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Old August 31st, 2007, 08:52 AM   #1
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Kicking Horse Canyon Trans-Canada Bridge Discussion | Completed





New Trans-Canada 'gateway' bridge opens in B.C.

Last Updated: Thursday, August 30, 2007 | 4:12 PM PT
CBC News

B.C.'s top construction project, a four-lane bridge that moves billions of dollars in goods a day along the Trans-Canada Highway in Kicking Horse Canyon, opens on Friday, 21 months ahead of schedule.

Billed by B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell as a vital shipping artery linking B.C. to Canada and beyond, the new 405-metre-long Park Bridge east of Golden, B.C., is costing the federal and provincial governments $137 million.

The investment, part of a $2.3-billion reconstruction of a 26-kilometre stretch of highway, should prove fruitful for Canadian business while also saving lives, the premier said.

"It's the gateway from B.C. to the rest of Canada, from Canada to British Columbia and from British Columbia to the world," Campbell said during an opening ceremony Thursday for the bridge, which rises 90 metres over the Kicking Horse River.

"It will save us hundreds of lives and it will provide for economic opportunities for people throughout the province," he added.

'Feat of engineering'

The bridge — "a feat of engineering" — will ease congestion as vehicles curve up and over, and also through the mountains, Kootenay-Columbia MP Jim Abbott said. The estimated 2,000 commercial trucks that travel through the canyon daily will also be able to drive along an improved six-kilometre section of the highway.

Before the reconstruction project, the 26-kilometre stretch of road was considered one of the worst in Canada, averaging 140 accidents a year — more than two-and-a-half times the provincial average. An inquiry into a fatal bus accident in 1990 led to recommendations that it be drastically upgraded.

Mayor of Golden James Doyle said he knows the perils of the road first-hand, having been in an accident there himself 17 years ago.

Phase 2 completion set for January 2008

"I've seen way too many people in my 39 years living in Golden get killed or injured badly," Doyle said.

As impressive as the scale of the Park Bridge project is the speed of its construction. It has only been five years since the first blueprints went out.

Phase 3 is expected to be the most complex endeavour, involving major improvements to 17 kilometres of the Trans-Canada Highway and the expansion to four lanes from two lanes.

The first phase, involving three kilometres of highway, began in 2002 and was completed in spring of 2006.

The Trans-Canada Highway route carries 9,000 vehicles per day during the summer and traffic is expected to increase by 50 per cent over the next 25 years, according to a news release from the Kicking Horse project.

Park Bridge was built under Phase 2 of the Kicking Horse Canyon Project. The second phase of construction, which also includes upgrading six kilometres of highway, is slated for completion in January 2008.



Looks quite amazing, and i'm amazed it's almost two years ahead of schedule. Very European.
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Old August 31st, 2007, 09:47 AM   #2
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Neat-o. Don't know if I'll ever use it though. Y'know, sitting here near the Yellowhead.
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Old August 31st, 2007, 12:16 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr.x View Post
Looks quite amazing, and i'm amazed it's almost two years ahead of schedule. Very European.
They set the target dates way back, so that they can look good being "ahead of schedule".
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Old August 31st, 2007, 05:07 PM   #4
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Wow...it's so slender and pretty that it looks like it will collapse under the weight of five 18-wheelers.
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Old August 31st, 2007, 05:44 PM   #5
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Great!
I'm sure it will help commercial trucking.
I would love to make the drive from Van to Calgary along that highway some day. In the summer, of course.
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Old September 5th, 2007, 12:46 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Nutterbug View Post
They set the target dates way back, so that they can look good being "ahead of schedule".

Actually the original schedule would have had completion during 2009, but an agressive work schedule of 365 days a year/24 hrs per day was proprosed by the group who won the contract to build Phase 2. It was stated that the project could not have been completed so quickly if a traditional public only tendering process had been used.

And sadly I travelled through this pass just three weeks ago and missed travelling on the new bridge. Gotta wait for next year now.

Last edited by Daguy; October 16th, 2008 at 08:26 AM.
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Old November 7th, 2007, 05:08 AM   #7
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Part of phase 3 (all except the tunnel) is now funded


Harper announces $2.2B for B.C. infrastructure
Tony Seskus , CanWest News Service
Published: Tuesday, November 06, 2007

GOLDEN, B.C. - A notorious stretch of the Trans-Canada Highway will be one of the key infrastructure projects to benefit from a new agreement between British Columbia and the federal government.

In a deal inked by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Premier Gordon Campbell on Tuesday, B.C. became the first province in Canada to sign on to Ottawa's new Building Canada Plan, a national, multibillion-dollar infrastructure program.

The deal will provide B.C. with $2.2 billion over seven years to invest in roads, bridges, tunnels, ports, public transit and other projects, including a section of the Trans-Canada Highway in the Kicking Horse Canyon.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper and BC Premier Gordon Campbell were in Golden, BC Tuesday to sign a new infrastructure plan which will see $2.2 billion invested into infrastructure in British Columbia over the next seven years. They are pictured here touring the site of the new bridge that recently opened just east of Golden.

"This Kicking Horse canyon is one of the most dangerous sections of the whole 8,000 kilometres of the Trans Canada in our country," said Jim Doyle, mayor of Golden, B.C., who welcomed the new funding.

"The money that has been invested, and now this investment today . . . I feel just over the moon."

Golden is located near the Alberta border, about 260 kilometres west of Calgary.

Nationally, the government is to put $33 billion into infrastructure projects, which Harper called the biggest program of national infrastructure investment in half a century.

"We understand how important it is to keep the flow of goods and people moving along Canada's national highway because our transportation infrastructure really is the lifeblood of our economy," Harper told reporters.

"Today's agreement under our Building Canada Plan will launch several new road improvement projects in this region and infrastructure projects elsewhere in British Columbia."

As part of the provincial-federal agreement, Ottawa will contribute $64.2 million to planned upgrades and improvements to 16 kilometres of the Trans-Canada Highway in the Rocky Mountains near Golden.

The total project is valued at $134 million.

The work includes dividing a section of the busy motorway through the Kicking Horse Canyon and making it into four lanes. The road is used by as many as a thousand commercial trucks daily and is a key route for goods destined for the Asia-Pacific region.

This summer, the highway's safety was significantly improved with the opening of a major $130-million bridge just east of Golden.

Campbell lauded the deal, saying the funds from the new agreement will be used on a cost-sharing basis to support important provincial infrastructure projects, such as tourism, public transit, green energy and wastewater systems.

"This $2.2-billion agreement over the next seven years allows us to plan out, allows us to work together and allows us to make sure we are maximizing the benefits of our investments for the people of British Columbia and of Canada."
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Old November 7th, 2007, 05:23 AM   #8
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^ those are mostly reannouncements. Harper needs to tell us something we don't know about.
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Old November 7th, 2007, 07:58 AM   #9
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I'm surprised he didn't send Stockwell Day...or a parrot to make this announcement the 3rd time.
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Old November 7th, 2007, 11:51 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nname View Post
Part of phase 3 (all except the tunnel) is now funded
I think they should build the tunnel first because construction time is supposed to be 6 years minimum. It'll probably take to at least 2020 now before it gets completed.

Edit:

I forgot to mention that not everything beside the tunnel is funded. Two of the four parts of phase 3 are funded. If you look carefully the first part from the highway 95 junction to tunnel portal does not include the highway 95 interchange and median barrier extension further west through Golden (ie a small portion of the freeway in Golden will not yet be part of the funding).

Last edited by Daguy; November 8th, 2007 at 08:03 AM.
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Old February 8th, 2009, 07:28 PM   #11
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I'm surprised he didn't send Stockwell Day...or a parrot to make this announcement the 3rd time.
Go huge a tree
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Old February 10th, 2009, 04:07 AM   #12
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This is a nice bridge



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Old February 11th, 2009, 08:22 AM   #13
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Awesome!
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Old February 12th, 2009, 09:09 AM   #14
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What a beautiful bridge!

What exactly is the final goal of TDH in BC? Are they building the whole route as 4 lanes. I've tried to find info but none of the maps seem to show the difference between a regular 2 laner and a 4 laner unless its full freeway.
Any help?
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Old February 13th, 2009, 12:54 AM   #15
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That last picture in Rhino's post is great. Beautiful place.
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Old February 13th, 2009, 02:03 AM   #16
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Indeed it is very beautiful, but there is always a price to be payed. Originally there were 2 potential alignment options for the park bridge. See this link to the website:

http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/kickinghorse...panel07%20.pdf

Option 12A (rock cut) has both a steeper grade, and a greater environmental impact than the alternative Option 11 (bridge entering twin tunnels on east side of canyon).

I am a huge tunnel fan myself, as they protect from hazardous weather conditions, remove less green space, and look really cool imo. As usual cost and timing to construct this alignment probably killed this option. A real shame I think.

Last edited by Daguy; February 13th, 2009 at 08:07 AM.
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Old February 13th, 2009, 07:57 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by ssiguy2 View Post
What a beautiful bridge!

What exactly is the final goal of TDH in BC? Are they building the whole route as 4 lanes. I've tried to find info but none of the maps seem to show the difference between a regular 2 laner and a 4 laner unless its full freeway.
Any help?

I assume by TDH you mean TCH. Funding has been set in place to four-lane from the TCH/highway 97 junction just east of Pritchard to Chase. Can't recall the timeline but it will be done in three stages over the next few years (within 10 I think). It will have frontage roads and access will be consolated to major intersections (private driveways removed) but will not have yet have interchanges to make it a freeway.

Completion of the whole project is probably going to be a long time. The Western Canada Transportation Infastructure Strategy for an Economic Network Executive Briefing (March 2005 - available at http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/publications...rch%202005.pdf, page 9) states that four-laning from Kamloops to Revelstoke is to occur in an 11-20 year time frame, which would be between 2016 and 2025. I would predict that sometime around 2025 this will be completed or very close to be completed, as this is the area of highest population density along the remaining sections of 2-lane TCH in BC, and small sections are already being 4 laned every few years right now.

The Kicking Horse Canyon section is stated in the report to be completed in 6 to 10 years, i.e. 2015. I think this will be closer to 2020, as the tunnel section will be extremely expensive ($350 million was the 2006 estimate, imagine what it will be when they actually get around to building it) and it will require 6 years to bore. This may be may happen more quickly if the alternative surface route is selected (see http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/kickinghorse...gment_3(1).pdf) which I wouldn't be surprized they choose considering what happened with the park bridge.

As for the remaining sections, much of it runs through national parks, and is therefore a national jurisdiction. The section east of the Kicking Horse Canyon Project, Yoho National Park, is entirely federal, and I expect that it will continue as an extension of the Banff Twinning Project in Banff National Park (in fact a report from a few years ago on the Banff website suggests that it may become part of the program in the future).

The section east of Revelstoke first runs alongside Revelstoke National Park (the boundary of the park is literally along the highway). I have never found any info as to whether the road is considered inside or outside the park, so it may or may not be a matter for the feds. Next it runs for about 20 km which is definitely provincial, then through Glacier National (federal) then another provincial section of 50 or 60 Km to Golden. So anywhere from about 1/3 to 1/2 of this portion of the highway is federal as well. I don't expect this section to be twinned until traffic counts are much higher, as I've driven this section many many times, and it is relatively easy drive for a 2-lane highway (definitely when compared to the Kicking Horse section) and there are no towns/cities along the route. I would predict twinning sometime between 2030 and 2040.

There was some mention in a report a few years on whether the TCH should be twinned in the Rogers Pass in the nearer term (can't remember where that one was) and it was concluded that passing lanes would likely come first, as traffic counts are much lower than in areas further west.

As for a full freeway upgrade heh I sometimes wonder if I will be a grandpa by then. Salmon Arm is one of the biggest problem areas. The eastern portion in Salmon Arm that was four laned just a few years ago is designed to allow an interchange at highway 97B in the future, and the 21 st NE and 30 st NE intersections have frontage roads and should be able to accommodate tight diamond interchanges with little expropriation. The area west of 21 st NE is problem though, as it runs through the denser downtown area, which extends for only about 1.5 km (not much for this Vancouverite) but is where most of Salmon Arm's businesses are located. I can't see local residents being happy about the core of their business district stripped and expropriated to build a freeway.

That means a southern realignment may be an option, or a bridge further north across the shuswap. There have even been proposals by some people to extend the TCH straight east on a new alignment somewhere around Blind Bay and shoot straight across the Shuswap, bypassing Salmon Arm and Sicamous completely, and probably shaving an hour off a trip from Kamloops to Revelstoke. Only problem is getting environmental approval, and getting through the Salmon Arm and Sicamous locals who would bitch like crazy given they would lose a huge portion of their holiday traffic.

Last edited by Daguy; February 25th, 2009 at 07:53 AM.
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Old February 15th, 2009, 08:45 PM   #18
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What portion did the feds just announce in the fed budget will be twinned?
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Old February 16th, 2009, 04:52 AM   #19
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Quote:
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What portion did the feds just announce in the fed budget will be twinned?

Directly from the website (http://www.th.gov.bc.ca/kickinghorse/index.htm):


Phase 3

In November 2007, the Governments of Canada and British Columbia announced joint funding for two segments of work under the new Building Canada infrastructure plan (see Project Updates). The Ministry of Transportation completed conceptual planning studies and began preliminary engineering studies in 2004. Concepts and designs have evolved with the assistance of public input, and can be viewed on the Community Consultation page.

1. Brake Check to Yoho National Park (Construction Start Fall 2008)
* 8.8 km
* 4-lane upgrade
* Replace Mt. Hunter Creek Bridge
* Access consolidation
* Wildlife fencing
* When completed in 2011, 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.

2. Golden Hill to West Portal (Construction Start Fall 2010)
* 3.5 km
* Grade reduction on Golden Hill
* Access consolidation
* Grade separation at Golden Donald Upper Road
* Cycling/pedestrian improvements
* Wildlife fencing

Last edited by Daguy; March 6th, 2009 at 05:36 AM.
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Old February 21st, 2009, 10:03 AM   #20
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The past called, it wants its post back...
I suggest some reading glasses.
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