Construction season shaping up

More than 300 construction projects in every corner of the city are moving ahead in an ambitious City of Edmonton action plan to build and maintain roads, bridges, LRT, parks and neighbourhoods—and build safely.  

“COVID-19 will cause impacts to construction projects, as it has for many other City programs and services,” said Jason Meliefste, Deputy City Manager, Integrated Infrastructure Services.

“But while the world has changed for the time being, we have important city-building work to continue. Strong and healthy infrastructure helps build a safe and healthy city that keeps moving.”

City building 

Edmontonians can expect to see work ramping up on ongoing construction projects, including the Groat Road Bridge, the Valley Line Southeast and early work on the Valley Line West. 

New projects are coming online, including the first major construction project on the Yellowhead Trail freeway conversion. Work on the Stadium LRT Station and other LRT renewal projects will ensure the system serves Edmontonians reliably and efficiently for years down the line. 

Groat Bridge, April 28, 2020, pic supplied by Graham Construction

As well, the City is moving forward with planned neighbourhood reconstruction in 10 neighbourhoods, including Alberta Avenue, Central McDougall, Highlands, Grandview Heights and Strathcona, and with major park redevelopments at Butler Memorial Park and Beaumaris Lake Open Space Rehabilitation.

Trembley behind visor, with hand sanitizer and in other personal protective equipment at the future Churchill Connector. On this worksite, visors are used where crews can’t safely work two metres apart.

City building safely

Construction projects get built with stuff easy to see: lumber, steel, concrete, rebar, stuff like that, stuff that’s hauled and measured and made to stand in place.

Construction projects also get built out of something not as easy to see, but even more crucial. They get built out of a commitment to safety. 

“Hazard assessments are done carefully, and health and safety plans are strictly enforced for everyone’s protection, whether we’re operating business as usual or under our current state of emergency,” said Meliefste. 

“I want to assure you that all of these projects will move forward in a safe manner.” 

Beau Trembley provides one piece of the safety picture. Trembley, seen above in personal protective equipment enhanced by a face visor, is one of the crew at work on the downtown Churchill Connector, where future passengers on the Valley Line Southeast LRT will connect to Churchill Square and other LRT lines.

Lisa Erickson, seen below behind a sealed face mask on the Jasper Avenue New Vision site, supplies another piece of the picture. The construction project will re-establish Jasper Avenue from 92 Street to 109 Street as an Edmonton main street. 

Lisa Erickson, Project Manager, Jasper Avenue New Vision

Meliefste said the City is taking extra steps with contractors to ensure workplaces are safe.

Neighbourhood renewal in Strathcona

Thank you to neighbours

Meliefste acknowledged that more people at home during a pandemic means more people inside during construction outside. 

“As much as possible, the City is working to minimize the impacts to citizens and to keep them informed,” he said. “Now more than ever, I want to thank Edmontonians for their support and patience during the construction season.”

Edmonton skyline from the taking-shape Davies Station on the Valley Line Southeast LRT.

City building for the future

Meliefste said the future is taking shape.

“We will come out of this pandemic, and, when we do, we know that almost a million Edmontonians will depend on the roads, bridges, LRT and facilities and parks we’re currently building for years to come,” he said.

For more information on construction work happening in Edmonton, visit edmonton.ca/construction.

Editor’s Note: The pic above at the top of the post shows construction at the new Davies Station on the Valley Line Southeast LRT.