SASKATOON, SASK. — Construction continues on Saskatoon’s North Commuter Parkway and Traffic Bridge with the entire bridge substructure and steel girders now in place.
Crews will work until October when the projects are scheduled to open, completing the bridge deck and the over 10 kilometres of four lane divided roadways connecting to it. The North Commuter Parkway will connect the Marquis Industrial Area to neighbourhoods on the east side as well as accommodate pedestrians and cyclists.
The Attridge Drive and Central Avenue intersection improvements and the widening of the Marquis Drive and Wanuskewin Road intersection are substantially complete and open to traffic, with completed bikeways, pathways and sound walls installed to shield residents from traffic noise.
Steel trusses were completed on the Traffic Bridge in 2017 and the concrete portion of the bridge deck has been installed.
Crews are working on the Saskatchewan Crescent overpass and retaining walls in Rotary Park over the next several months. The retaining wall on Victoria Avenue was completed in 2017 and roadwork is scheduled for completion in 2018.
Graham Commuter Partners were awarded the contract for the project in October 2015. The estimated cost of the project is $497.7 million over the next 33 years.
The project is funded through the PPP Canada Fund, with the federal government providing an investment of up to 25 per cent of eligible costs up to a maximum of $66 million. The province of Saskatchewan is contributing $50 million and the City of Saskatoon is contributing the remaining funds.
The bridge section has been designed and built to a minimum life cycle of 75 years, with the associated roadways designed and constructed to a minimum life cycle of 50 years.
A shortlist of names for the North Commuter Parkway Bridge was announced Feb. 27. A committee of city representatives and Metis and First Nation leaders and elders have chosen four options; two Cree words and two historical figures.
The four names are: Chief Mistawasis, Louis Riel, Waniskâ and Wîcîhitowin.
Waniskâ is a Cree word meaning “to arise” and Wîcîhitowin is a Cree word meaning “to help mutually” or “the act of helping one another.”