Calgary taxpayers could be on the hook for up to $8 million in the future if the province follows through on possible plans to hand Deerfoot Trail maintenance back to the city.
While discussions are far off, the handover, if approved, wouldn’t go ahead until after the ring road is completed in 2013, according to Alberta Transportation, but the move could cost the city between $5 to $8 million in maintenance and snow-clearing costs.
Calgary Ward 13 Ald. Diane-Colley Urquhart says the notion caught city council off-guard.
The province took responsibility for the 50-kilometre road 10 years ago.
“It’s not something that really has ever been discussed before so it does come of somewhat a surprise and we’ll have to prepare for the consequences of it,” Colley-Urquhart said.
Alberta Transportation confirmed the Transportation Minister Luke Ouellette would like to discuss the possibility, but said it wouldn’t be anytime soon.
Calgary driver Patrick Brown said he is more worried about the city’s ability to maintain the road than the cost.
“I have seen how the city clears roads, and the Deerfoot could become even more of a mess,” he said.