The governments of Canada and Alberta announced funding for the construction of a pedestrian-cyclist bridge in Banff and the addition of a low-floor bus to the City of Cold Lake’s fleet.
Building a bridge for active transportation over the Bow River in Banff will help residents and visitors reach the public transit system more easily by foot or by bike and will further encourage sustainable modes of transportation throughout Banff, the Bow Valley, and Banff National Park. The new bridge will enhance pedestrian and cyclist connectivity between downtown and principal visitor attractions and residences on the south side of the Bow River. It will also help reduce traffic on the vehicle bridge by promoting active transportation.
The federal government is investing $2.2 million in this project through the Public Transit Infrastructure Stream (PTIS) of the Investing in Canada plan. This funding is conditional on fully satisfying environmental assessment requirements and consultations with Indigenous groups.
Additionally, the Bow Valley Regional Transit Services Commission and the Pauw Foundation are also contributing to this project, $800,000 and $2.5 million respectively.
“The pedestrian bridge will provide a much-needed connection over the Bow River for Roam Public Transit users who are accessing transit routes on both sides of the river,” said Martin Bean, Chief Administrative Officer, Bow Valley Regional Transit Services Commission. “With better transit connections, and a convenient pedestrian and cyclist path, we’re confident this project will help residents and visitors move throughout Banff without the use of a private vehicle.”
Transit fleet enhancement
This project involves purchasing an additional low-floor bus, with video surveillance, to replace two older buses. It will make public transit more accessible for users with mobility challenges and will contribute to modernizing the City of Cold Lake’s transit service. The project will also help the City continue to lower greenhouse gas emissions through increased fuel efficiency.
The Government of Canada is investing $260,000 in this project through PTIS, and the City of Cold Lake is contributing $390,000.
“Upgrading public transit fleets and building more transportation infrastructure will encourage Canadians to choose greener and healthier ways to get around,” said Jim Carr, Minister and the Government of Canada’s Special Representative for the Prairies.
“The City of Cold Lake is growing and thousands of people rely on our transit service to get them where they need to go,” added Craig Copeland, Mayor of Cold Lake. “This new, low-floor bus enhances our fleet and ensures our residents have a safe, reliable and accessible way to get around the City. It allows us to phase out our older, less-efficient buses and replace them with cleaner-burning vehicles that pollute less and are better for the environment. It’s a win-win situation, and we’re thankful for the matching funds through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.”
Featured image: Photo illustration of existing Pedestrian Bridge at Muskrat Street superimposed on location crossing from Central Park to the Recreation Grounds. (Town of Banff)