Calgary

New Airdrie interchange on QEII Highway to cost $83M

A new interchange linking Airdrie to the Queen Elizabeth II Highway that the city has long lobbied for is going ahead, officials announced Thursday. 

Construction of ramps and bridge at 40th Avenue to start next year

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announced Thursday that the province will build a new interchange and bridge to improve access from Airdrie to the Queen Elizabeth II Highway, also known as Highway 2. (CBC)

A new interchange linking Airdrie to the Queen Elizabeth Highway that the city has long lobbied for is going ahead, officials announced Thursday. 

The $83-million interchange and bridge will be built at the QEII Highway and 40th Avenue.

The province will contribute up to $21.1 million and the City of Airdrie is putting up about $62 million toward the project. 

"We've been advocating for this bridge for more than a decade now," said Airdrie Mayor Peter Brown.

He said traffic congestion and insufficient access to Highway 2 has been constant frustration for drivers in the fast-growing city of 70,000 people.

A new interchange and bridge over the QEII Highway will be constructed at 40th Avenue in Airdrie. (Google Maps)

The province says the traffic volume on QEII near 40th Avenue is about 85,000 vehicles per day, including 7,000 commercial vehicles. And traffic has increased by about 30 per cent since 2014.

Preliminary work, including acquiring rights-of-way and moving utilities, is already underway, said Transportation Minister Ric McIver.

"This project will benefit families and communities in Airdrie as the city continues to grow," he said.

Construction on the interchange and bridge over the highway is expected to begin in 2021-22 and be complete by 2024.

"Building this interchange now will create over 300 jobs and make life easier for all Albertans who drive the QEII," said Kenney.

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