Traffic along portions of Highway 2 near Ponoka

Traffic along portions of Highway 2 near Ponoka

Paving projects will disrupt highway traffic

Province, federal governments commit $535 million for road and bridge construction projects this summer

Highway drivers will be impacted by the annual road construction season this summer.

Alongside the previously announced Ponoka County paving of Menaik Road, the provincial government this week revealed there will be 96 projects conducted on Alberta highways this year, which includes three in the Ponoka area.

One project, the paving of six kilometres of Highway 53 between Highways 2 and 2A, will have a large effect on traffic in and out of Ponoka.

Brian Mason, Alberta’s minister of both infrastructure and transportation, made the announcement at a press conference April 20 alongside federal infrastructure and communities minister Amarjeet Sohi.

“By working with our federal counterparts, we are able to do even more to improve highways, connect communities and enhance the movement of goods and services across Alberta,” he said, adding the work will make lives better for everyone in Alberta.

Meanwhile, Sohi stated these infrastructure investments will create stronger and more efficient corridors for trade as well as help business grow and generate jobs.

“These investments in highway infrastructure across Alberta will support economic growth and provide safer and more efficient transportation routes for Canadians,” he added.

The other two projects are both on Highway 2 and will likely cause delays on the province’s busiest corridor. The first will see selective portions of north and southbound lanes paved on the stretch between Highway 53 and Highway 13, while the second involves pavement overlay work on a stretch that runs from four kilometres south of Highway 53 to one kilometre north of the Highway 2A interchange near Morningside.

Combined, the projects will cost about $535 million shared between the provincial and federal governments. The province’s share works out to around $239 million.

No timelines were announced for when these projects may begin.