by Morinville News Staff

The Government of Alberta announced Thursday morning it plans to fully twin the Highway 15 corridor between Edmonton and Fort Saskatchewan.

The project involves the construction of a second bridge crossing the North Saskatchewan River at the southern entrance to Fort Saskatchewan as well as twinning the remaining two-lane section of Highway 15 towards Edmonton. The government believes the project will improve safety, alleviate congestion, and create hundreds of jobs over the next few years.

“This investment will help stimulate our economic recovery and it will also make life better for people in this community,” Premier Rachel Notley said in a release Thursday. “Whether you’re moving materials to the work site, products to market, or kids to a hockey game, it takes a lot of time – more than it should. Family time should be at home and not stuck on a bridge.”

The government also sees the expanded Highway 15 bridge as an opportunity to support economic development and diversification by improving the connection between Fort Saskatchewan and Sturgeon County through the Industrial Heartland, an area that will see two new multi-billion dollar petrochemical facilities constructed in the next few years.

Fort Saskatchewan Mayor Gale Katchur said a safe, high-functioning transportation network is critical to keep the economic region thriving and to ensure the safety of our citizens.

“We appreciate the province recognizing the value of investing in this infrastructure that keeps Albertans productive and industry economically sound,” she said.

Although the design of the project will take place this year, construction will not begin before 2019 and take three years to complete.

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