There will be even more delays on Highway 40 starting this weekend as some of the work needed to start twinning Highway 40 gets underway. Regional Director for Alberta Transportation in the Peace Region Ryan Konowalyk says what’s planned is a precursor for the eventual twinning of the highway from the City of Grande Prairie to just south of the Norbord plant.
“The project is not on our current three year provincial construction program, but it is on the unfunded capital projects list,” he explains. “This engineering work is kind of the first step in getting a design and tender ready for when the funding becomes available.”
Being on Alberta’s infrastructure sunshine list means Highway 40 is considered a priority for the province, but it could be anywhere from four to 10 years out. However, it’s hoped the expected traffic from an industrial park planned for the MD of Greenview will help push up that timeline.
Starting Sunday, March 4th, a small crew will be working 10 kilometres south of Grande Prairie. The southbound passing lane will be closed and the speed limit reduced to 50 kilometres an hour. Konowalyk says they understand this will mean 15 to 20 minute delays for drivers.
“Certainly it’s a busy section of highway. We did stipulate to the company doing the work that they had to do it from 9:30 a.m. onward to dusk because southbound’s obviously got a big rush in the morning.”
Two-way traffic will remain, but down one lane heading out of town. The work is expected to be done by March 10th, weather permitting.
In total, the Highway 40 twinning project spans 18 kilometres. It also includes a second bridge over the Wapiti River with pedestrian crossing.