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Highway 3 twinning moves ahead

Posted on November 24, 2023 by Taber Times

Southern Alberta Newspapers

Alberta’s government has awarded the first contract to begin twinning Highway 3.

Highway 3 is a vital economic corridor and east-west link, and the first section of the highway being twinned sees approximately 3,900 vehicles per day. Through $179.7 million in provincial funding, this first phase will twin Highway 3 between the town of Taber and the hamlet of Burdett. The contract for the 46-kilometre project was awarded to Ledcor Highways Ltd.

“Highway 3 is a key economic corridor in southern Alberta between Saskatchewan and British Columbia, south of the Trans-Canada Highway. It is critical infrastructure for Alberta’s growing agri-business industry and will enhance tourism and improve safety in the region as well,” said Devin Dreeshen, Minister of Transportation and Economic Corridors, in a statement.

Pre-construction work, including acquiring the right of way and relocating utilities, is underway and will be completed this year. 

“It is exciting to hear of further progress in realizing the twinning of Highway 3. Residents in the region depend on this busy road for commuting, business, and pleasure.  Improving it will enhance the agri-food corridor, tourism, and further economic development, while increasing the safety of all those that travel the highway,” said Brian Hildebrand, Executive Officer Director-at-Large of Highway 3 Twinning Development Association, as member designate of the M.D. of Taber, in a statement.

Construction will begin in spring 2024, with completion anticipated in 2025. The project is expected to support 755 jobs.

“I am excited to see this important project get underway. Twinning this stretch of Highway 3 is critical to supporting jobs, growth and the agri-food processing corridor in the region. This project has been a priority of mine and I want to thank Minister Dreeshen for his commitment to twinning this vital east-west link,” said Grant Hunter, MLA for Taber-Warner, in a statement.

Twinning Highway 3 from border to border will be completed in eight phases to limit costs and minimize disruption to people and businesses along the route. 

On behalf of the Town of Taber, I would like to say how pleased we are that the twinning construction for Taber to Burdett will begin soon. The economic benefits to the Town of Taber and surrounding areas, as well as the safety of all the travellers on Highway 3, are going to be tremendous. The Town of Taber would like to thank Premier Smith for seeing the importance of the project and the benefits for all of southern Alberta, especially for our producers,” says Jack Brewin, Treasurer of Highway 3 Twinning Development Association and councillor with the Town of Taber, in a statement.

The other seven sections of the project are in various phases, including consultation, planning and design, land acquisition, environmental assessment, engineering or contract tendering.

“This is great news for our association members and municipalities all along the agri-food corridor, in addition to all southern Albertans who will be ecstatic when dirt begins to move next spring. Our association extends our thanks to Premier Danielle Smith and Devin Dreeshen, minister of Transportation and Economic Corridors, for your commitment to this vital project,” said Bill Chapman, president, Highway 3 Twinning Development Association, in a statement.

The eight phases of the project include:

• Phase 1, 46 kilometres – twin Highway 3 between Taber and Burdett

• Phase 2, 10 kilometres – Highway 3X/Coleman Bypass

• Phase 3, 15 kilometres – east of Seven Persons to Medicine Hat

• Phase 4, 47 kilometres – Blairmore to east of Highway 6 at Pincher Creek

• Phase 5, 28 kilometres – east of Bow Island to east of Seven Persons

• Phase 6, 23 kilometres – east of Burdett to east of Bow Island

• Phase 7, 38 kilometres – Pincher Creek to west of Fort Macleod

• Phase 8, eight kilometres – Alberta/B.C. border to Highway 3X

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