More lanes set to open on Edmonton’s Quesnell Bridge

An additional lane in both directions over the Quesnell Bridge and the Fox Drive exit ramp westbound will be open to motorists by the end of the month, says a news release from the City of Edmonton.

The bridge-widening and rehabilitation was originally supposed to be complete by the end of this year. Three lanes in each direction plus the Fox Drive ramp heading west on Whitemud Drive will be open by the end of November.

However, some work will have to continue next year, said Byron Nicholson, director of special projects with the city’s capital construction department.

“The work remaining for this project in 2011 will include waterproofing and paving work, which requires warm, dry weather to complete,” Nicholson said. “Crews will also construct a concrete barrier on the east side of the bridge.”

The speed limit through the winter will be 60 km/h unless otherwise posted.

The Quesnell Bridge is the city’s busiest bridge, carrying about 120,000 vehicles a day. The bridge was not meant to handle such traffic volume when it was built in 1967, said Nicholson.

“This past year we were able to complete work on the retaining walls near 149th Street, the Fox Drive overpass, widening the west side of the Quesnell Bridge, constructing the stormwater management facility and widening Whitemud Drive from 53rd Avenue to 149th Street,” Nicholson said in the release. “It’s been a very productive season and we look forward to putting the finishing touches on the Quesnell Bridge project next spring.”

The bridge rehabilitation and widening is expected to extend the bridge’s lifespan by about 50 years.

The $161 million project is on budget.


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