The second round of extended highway closures associated with Phase 4 of the Kicking Horse Canyon Project have been announced, with multi-day closures beginning Sept. 20 and lasting until Dec. 1.
The highway will be closed on weekdays, beginning on Monday, Sept. 20 at noon MDT, until Friday. Sept. 24 at noon MDT, when it will re-open for weekend travel.
The highway will then be closed for two weeks straight, from Monday, Sept. 27 at noon, before re-opening on Friday, Oct. 8 at noon for the Thanksgiving long weekend.
Closures will recommence on Tuesday, Oct. 12 at noon MDT, with Highway 1 not scheduled to re-open to through-traffic again until Wednesday, Dec. 1 at 6 a.m. MDT.
During the closures, traffic will be re-routed along highways 93 and 95, following the same traffic control pattern as the extended closure that took place from April 12 until the end of May.
”Construction activities being carried out cannot be performed safely in the presence of traffic or during shorter interruptions,” read a statement from the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.
During the extended closures, the construction zone will be opened to local/commuter traffic, escorted by a pilot vehicle, during one half-hour period in the morning and one half-hour period in the afternoon. Similar escorts will be provided for local school buses. This is in line with the pass system that was used during the first closures.
Further updates to the commuter pass system will be provided closer to the closure.
Currently, the highway is only experiencing overnight closures for construction, with traffic being diverted south through Radium between the hours of 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. MDT. There are also additional evening stoppages between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., with 30 minute delays prior the full overnight closures.
This is expected to continue for the month of July, with no planned daytime stoppages for the rest of summer. These stoppages will be in effect until the extended closures take hold.
“The traffic management regime is complex and we have worked with local stakeholders to identify their concerns. They recognize that this work is necessary and we will try to have it happen when there’s the least impact,” said Executive Project Manager Mike Lorimer at the start of the initial closures.
The project will see the highway expanded from two lanes to four with a meridian divider, which Lorimer says will help make it safer. Approximately 4.8 km of highway will be updated, with 13 curves realigned and wider shoulders along the highway to accommodate cyclists.
“In the end, we expect it to be a safer and more reliable highway that folks from Calgary and Vancouver and all over can feel more comfortable using,” said Lorimer.
Travellers are encouraged to check DriveBC prior to departing for up to date information on closures.