Construction of the southeast section of Calgary's ring road will begin next month, with the province announcing Friday that a contractor has been chosen for what it calls the largest single highway project in Alberta's history.
The Chinook Roads partnership will design and build the road, a 25-kilometre section of Stoney Trail that will run along the eastern city limits between 17th Avenue S.E. and Highway 22X.
The new stretch of roadway will eliminate traffic lights from Chapparal Boulevard to Highway 1A.
It is slated to be finished by late 2013, bringing the overall ring road project to 70 per cent of completion.
The project will be a public-private initiative — called a P3 arrangement — similar to the deal used to build the northeast section of the ring road, which was completed in November 2009.
The new section is pegged to cost $769 million, a price tag the government will pay off over the next 30 years, it said in a release.
"We're taking advantage of lower construction prices while providing jobs for hundreds of people," said Premier Ed Stelmach, who announced the project Friday.
"Projects like these ensure Alberta has the infrastructure it needs for a strong economic recovery."
Without private sector involvement in the project, it would have cost $1.8 billion, according to the province.
The Alberta government will contribute $232 million during the construction phase while the federal government is providing $100 million as part of its Building Canada Plan.
The six-lane roadway will have nine interchanges, one road flyover, two rail flyovers and 27 bridges.
The partnership contracted to build the highway is made up of SNC-Lavalin and Acciona S.A., a Spanish civil engineering conglomerate.
The 33-year contract also includes maintenance of Deerfoot Trail from its junction with Stoney Trail S.E. to its junction with Highway 2A.