Trans-Canada Highway twinning will force westbound drivers to B.C. on hour-long detour

CALGARY — If you’re planning to drive west much further than Lake Louise after Monday, you should be aware of a major highway construction project in the works.

Parks Canada says the B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure will be proceeding with the first phase of a twinning project for the Trans-Canada Highway through Kicking Horse Canyon west of Yoho National Park.

The work begins Monday, meaning the highway will be closed in both directions from west of Yoho National Park to Golden, B.C.

Drivers can still continue west beyond the closure area, but they’ll need to take a detour onto Highway 93 South, through Kootenay National Park and B.C. Highway 95.

It will take some time because the detour adds more than an hour to the trip.

The detour is expected to be in place from April 12 to May 14 and then intermittently until the end of May.

BILLION-DOLLAR PROJECT

The twinning project, according to the B.C. government’s website, will upgrade the Trans-Canada Highway to a four-lane highway with a speed limit of 100 km/h.

“(It) will allow traffic to move more safely and efficiently. Communities will be better connected, and businesses will be better able to move their products throughout the province, through our ports and beyond our borders,” the government’s website reads.

B.C. committed $1.044 billion to the project, which twins Highway 1 from Kamloops to the Alberta border.

calgary, alberta, b.c., highway 1, trans-canada, d

(Supplied/B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)

TOWN OF FIELD STILL OPEN

Even while Highway 1 is closed to traffic, Yoho National Park and the town of Field are still open, Parks Canada says.

“Please visit responsibly. Parks Canada would like to remind all visitors that speed and human food kill wildlife. You can keep wildlife alive by obeying speed limits and never feeding wildlife or littering, including coffee cups and organic waste. Food and garbage kill wildlife by attracting them to roads and causing them to become aggressive and a danger to themselves and humans,” the agency writes in a statement.

Visitors are reminded to plan their trip by consulting Drive BC and Alberta 511 for the latest highway information.

The project is expected be completed in 2024. Further information can be found online.

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