Monday, December 11, 2017

Southwest Calgary ring road construction continues despite environmental appeals

The province says an environmental appeal that has stalled some construction on the southwest Calgary ring road will not force a change in the way a bridge over the Elbow River is designed.

“The appellants are looking for a redesign of the bridge, but the areas that are under stay [on hold], none of that would be affected in terms of how we would go about building the bridge,” said Adam Johnson, a spokesperson for Alberta Transportation.

At issue are four wetlands that are affected by the new $1.42 billion project, including a popular beaver pond.

Allie Tulick and Jeff Brookman, both with the organization YYC Cares, which opposes how the project is being built through the Weaselhead area, filed the successful appeals.

They are concerned about the environmental impacts and want what’s called a clear-span bridge that would raise the roadway over the entire valley.

“They have a very lengthy clear-span bridge over the Bow on Stoney Trail,” said Tulick, arguing the province could do something similar for this project as opposed to a bridge with berms on either side.

She says she’s aware the bridge is not a part of the appeal, but that the board can make recommendations and is hopeful that could include a redesign.

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