Twinning of Highway 15 bridge to Fort Saskatchewan to start by 2019

Construction of the new twinned Highway 15 bridge in Fort Saskatchewan is expected to start by 2019, Transportation Minister Brian Mason said Thursday.  

The project, announced in last week's provincial budget, means a second bridge will be built alongside the existing two-lane bridge over the North Saskatchewan River.

As well, the remaining two-lane section of Highway 15 towards Edmonton will be twinned.

The aim of the project is to improve safety and relieve traffic congestion.

Design work is scheduled to start this year. The cost of the project is estimated to be $200 to $300 million.

The old bridge was built in 1957 and will be rehabilitated.

Mason said he expects the project to take about two to three years to complete after start of construction.

Fort Saskatchewan Mayor Gayle Katchur said she was excited work is now underway for a project that she said will benefit the entire region.

"It is early. We know that. And we know a lot of engineering work and design work has to occur. And it is going to occur," Katchur said.

"But you know what they've always said? 'If you don't start something, you can't finish it.' "

The bridge has been overcapacity for years and has been the cause of many traffic collisions, Katchur said.