Alberta’s Ministry of Transportation might be doing a “thorough evaluation” of the brand new alignment for Calgary’s Green Line LRT, in accordance with a letter sent to the mayor on Wednesday.
Within the letter, Transportation Minister Ric McIver said the Green Line is the largest infrastructure project in Alberta’s history, meaning the province desires to “make sure that we’ve properly considered the risks related to a fancy rail line through downtown Calgary.”
“The project has also passed through several significant changes in scope and value because it was first announced, including the newest version of the project, which was only revealed in the previous couple of weeks, and which we’ve not had a chance to review intimately,” McIver wrote.
Calgary city councillors voted almost unanimously earlier this week to maneuver forward with the brand new alignment of the primary stage of the LRT expansion, which is able to see trains go from 16 Avenue N to Shepard.
The primary phase, which might be constructed in three stages, is significantly different — and shorter — than what was initially proposed, and than what the provincial government committed $1.53 billion to.
McIver said it’s “incumbent” on the province to be certain that cash is being “used responsibly.”
“We due to this fact intend to take the time crucial to finish a radical and informed evaluation of the advantages and risks of this latest version of the project before obligations are incurred by the province, to make sure that taxpayers are protected,” McIver said.
McIver said the ministry is “committed” to seeing the Green Line through, and expects the province’s review to be done this summer. He also said the province will make recommendations on “a path forward that ensures the utmost variety of Calgarians are in a position to profit.”
Mayor Naheed Nenshi said Thursday he’s not surprised by the letter and the province’s intent to review the brand new plan.
“The spin on this has been that they’re trying to take money away — that is just not how I read that,” Nenshi said.
“I read that as, ‘Thanks for making the choice, please send us all of the technical documents so we are able to have our experts read them,’ which is completely not unreasonable in any way.”
Construction of the Green Line is anticipated to begin next yr and trains must be moving along the lines by 2026. The project can be expected to create 20,000 jobs.