By Trevor Busch
Finalizing other projects throughout the province has resulted in a delay for the construction start of twinning Highway 3, says Taber-Warner MLA Grant Hunter.
In Phase 1, 46 kilometres will be twinned between Taber and Burdett. In June, Hunter told Southern Alberta Newspapers that construction was “imminent” but has since tempered that prediction.
“In terms of Highway 3 between Taber and Burdett, that work is still moving forward,” said Hunter. “I talked to the transportation minister (Devin Dreeshen) and to his department a couple of weeks ago, and they said that things are going well. Unfortunately, we are a bit behind schedule on that one. It was more because of some of the other projects that they were trying to finish up in other parts of the province, that due to supply chain issues and so forth, it was just taking them a little bit longer than they had hoped.”
The overall project – full twinning from border to border – is being proposed in eight phases to limit cost factors and avoid disruption to people that live and work along the route.
For Highway 3, the province has seven other phases to complete the twinning, including Phase 2 (10 km – Highway 3X/Coleman bypass), Phase 3 (15 km – east of Seven Persons to Medicine Hat), Phase 4 (47 km – Blairmore to east of Highway 6 at Pincher Creek), Phase 5 (28 km – east of Bow Island to east of Seven Persons), Phase 6 (23 km – east of Burdett to east of Bow Island), Phase 7 (38 km – Pincher Creek to west of Fort Macleod), and Phase 8 (8 km – Alberta-B.C. border to Highway 3X).
“They had originally said that we’re going to have shovels in the ground in the spring of this year,” said Hunter. “But they still plan on having shovels in the ground this year. It’s just some of the other projects had taken a little longer than they expected.”