Calgary

Part of Calgary southwest BRT project could be delayed as ATCO deals with pipeline

A major part of the new Southwest bus rapid transit (BRT) project will be delayed for a couple of years because a natural gas pipeline must be removed first.

'We take the feedback that we get from citizens, from stakeholders very seriously'

City of Calgary transportation spokesman Sean Somers, left, listens to some impassioned criticism of the southwest transitway project during a public information session in the Woodbine community in February. (CBC)

A major part of the new southwest bus rapid transit (BRT) project will be delayed for a couple of years because a natural gas pipeline must be removed first.

In releasing a 92-page document to answer questions about the BRT project, the city says it is making changes as a result of public feedback.

There have been questions about how the city can build dedicated bus lanes along 14th Street S.W. when ATCO Gas is planning to remove a high-pressure natural gas line there. The pipeline will be replaced by a new one along the southwest ring road.

Sean Somers with Calgary Roads says the bus way between Glenmore and Southland can't go ahead until ATCO takes out the gas line.

Parts of phase 2 of the southwest BRT project could be delayed for around 2 years while ATCO moves a natural gas pipeline. (Supplied)

"That particular portion of the southwest BRT between Glenmore Trail and Southland Drive — so the dedicated transit portion — will be delayed again to accommodate the work that's happening with ATCO to ensure that, in all honesty, that we're not digging up the road twice," Somers said.

But construction on the rest of the BRT — where buses will travel with other traffic — could start sooner.

Somers says another change they've made to respond to public concerns is to do away with the transitway crossing at 75th Avenue S.W. near Rockyview Hospital. Instead, buses will enter the dedicated lanes just south of 75th Avenue.

An artist's rendering of a section of the southwest BRT project near the Rockyview hospital. (Supplied)

"We take the feedback that we get from citizens, from stakeholders very seriously and again, we've incorporated that feedback and it's reflected in the work you see there today."

A city council committee will discuss the changes at a meeting next week.

A group opposed to the project is hoping for a big turnout and is offering complimentary shuttle service "if you need a ride to the LRT station."

now