Tuesday, October 4, 2016

To tunnel or not to tunnel - what City Council’s decision means for Calgary

Today, City Council approved a fully tunneled LRT route in Calgary’s downtown core. The approval was made “in principle”, contingent on the overall funding for the Green Line program.

The fully tunneled route would see the Green Line LRT run underground from the CP tracks in the Beltline, under 2 Street S.W., and under the Bow River. The line would resurface north of 16 Avenue N along Centre Street N.

Why is the tunnel decision so important?

The “in principal” decision to tunnel the Green Line LRT route in downtown takes us one step closer to finalizing the design of this LRT line and refining the overall cost estimates. It also shows City Council’s commitment to building the best project for Calgary’s future.

What happens next?

Public engagement and technical design is ongoing on the route alignment in the Beltline, and along the northern portions of the Green Line. The project team is evaluating four alignment options in the Beltline, including a tunneled option under 12 Avenue S, which was approved today for further investigation. Visit our online engagement to provide your input on the Beltline route! A final Beltline recommendation will be made to City Council’s Transportation and Transit Committee by December 2016.

Final recommendations on the full 46 kilometre Green Line route, procurement strategy and construction staging will be made in June 2017.

What’s the deal with funding?

The Green Line will be a long-term investment in Calgary’s future, and will likely be constructed in phases over a number of years. Discussions are currently progressing among all three levels of government to determine the overall funding for the program.

Federal Government: In July 2015, the Government of Canada announced support for the Green Line for up to $1.53 billion from the Public Transit Infrastructure Fund. The City is awaiting application guidelines to be released in order to apply for this funding.

Provincial Government: Funding discussions are ongoing with the Government of Alberta. The City applied for funding through the Province’s Green Transit Incentives Program (GreenTRIP) on August 31, 2016.

Municipal Government: In December 2015, The City committed $1.56 billion over 30 years, contingent on receiving support from the Provincial government.

For more information visit calgary.ca/greenline

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