Albertans heading into British Columbia this weekend will save at least an hour as they traverse newly completed sections of Highway 1.
The stretch of the Trans-Canada highway east of Golden, B.C., will be available to drivers from 6 a.m. MT Friday onward. The portion of the road has been closed for two months, with the exception of Thanksgiving weekend, and was set to reopen Dec. 1.
The completed portion of the Kicking Horse Canyon project includes up to two kilometres of the final 4.8-km section.
The alternate route had drivers detour between Banff and Lake Louise at Castle Junction on Highway 93, before heading north again at Radium Hot Springs.
The upgrades include widening the highway from two to four lanes, realigning sections, creating more space for cyclists, and work to mitigate rock fall and avalanche hazards.
The fourth and final phase of the Kicking Horse Canyon project is set to be completed by winter 2023-24.
Overnight closures can be expected through the winter, though no full closures are scheduled for the project until the spring.