Edmonton decides to go with overpass to deal with rail traffic on 50 Street

Written by Bill Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
image description
A rendering of what the overpass at 50 Street will look like when completed.

The city of Edmonton has unveiled the design for an overpass to help deal with rail traffic on 50 Street.

The at-grade crossing on 50 Street sees about eight trains daily along with dozens of switching operations. The crossing is blocked between 35 to 64 times a day, creating a headache for 32,000 to 35,000 motorists.

The federal government committed $40 million to add grade separation at the crossing at 50 Street and 82nd Avenue back in 2018, and overpass construction could begin in 2022 with a completion date of 2026.

50 Street will be widened to three lanes in each direction, and there also will be a sidewalk and a shared-use path. A new road will be constructed under the overpass to connect 82 and 84 avenues.

The city went with an overpass instead of an underpass because of cost, construction time, land acquisition and impacts, and stormwater issues. Officials also believe overpass construction will be quieter and fewer detours will be needed.

Early construction work will involve the relocation of utilities and building a detour, and will begin this year.

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