Calgary, start your engines - Metro US

Calgary, start your engines

Thirty years, $1 billion in provincial funding and 44 kilometers equals a world-class roadway now open for business, said the province’s transportation minister.

Minister Luke Ouellette cut the proverbial ribbon yesterday for the massive north portion of the city’s ring road, featuring 12 interchanges, one flyover and three signalized intersections that will be replaced by interchanges by 2013.

“I think of one simple word to describe this new ring road — it’s big,” Ouellette said.

“That’s only fitting because Calgary is a major city in a growing province and needs and deserves a road system on which to move their people and goods safely and efficiently.”

The new Stoney Trail stretches from Highway 1 — 16th Ave. NW — on Calgary’s west side to Highway 1A — 17 Ave. SE — on the city’s east side and represents 45 per cent of the entire ring road project.

Calgary motorists were ecstatic at the news about the road projected to shorten drive times and ease congestion, including delivery driver Matthias Schneider.

“Not just for me because I drive a lot, but I think a lot of people have waited a long time for this. This will help take people off the other city roads,” Schneider said.

His only complaint is the fact the three signalized intersections will be removed down the road and he questions why the province didn’t “do it right the first time.”

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