This release was issued under a previous government.

Deerfoot Trail upgrades to create jobs, cut commute

Minister Mason, with Service Alberta Minister Brian Malkinson, announces a $478 million investment in Deerfoot Trail.

Deerfoot Trail is the busiest roadway in Alberta with an average of 175,000 vehicles travelling on it every day. The province is adding both northbound and southbound lanes to 21 kilometres of Deerfoot Trail between Beddington Trail and Anderson/Bow Bottom Trail, to improve traffic flow and ease congestion.

Multiple interchanges will also be upgraded with additional lanes at Memorial Drive, 17 Avenue, Glenmore Trail, Southland Drive and Anderson/Bow Bottom Trail to reduce commute times at key bottlenecks.

“Deerfoot Trail is the busiest road in Alberta, and a vital artery for Calgary. It has become increasingly congested, and everyone who drives this road will appreciate this expansion plan. We want commuters to spend less time in traffic, and more time with their families and loved ones.”

Brian Mason, Minister of Transportation

Calgarians rely on Deerfoot Trail as the city’s most used north-south vehicle corridor. This major infrastructure project will transform Deerfoot Trail into a modern freeway that meets the current and future needs of a growing, active city.

“These improvements to Deerfoot Trail have been long awaited by Calgarians. This substantial investment from the Government of Alberta will go a long way in improving the traffic flow and safety on a roadway that is used by thousands of Calgarians every day.”

Naheed Nenshi, mayor, City of Calgary

This major expansion builds upon work already underway to optimize traffic flow on Deerfoot Trail. In early 2019, the province issued a Request for Proposals for engineering of a new Intelligent Transportation System to help ease congestion by employing variable speed limit technology and new message boards to alert commuters of expected travel times and incidents ahead.

The expansion of Deerfoot Trail is expected to create 2,330 jobs, and $478 million has been allocated in the Capital Plan for the project.

Quick facts

  • An initial study released in 2017 made recommendations for short-term improvements to Deerfoot Trail, including:
    • New Intelligent Transportation System
    • New interchange improvements at:
      • McKnight to 64 Avenue ramp connection
      • 11 Street northbound connection to Deerfoot, north of Beddington
      • Southland Drive to Anderson/Bow Bottom Trail
  • In early 2019, the Government of Alberta issued a Request for Proposals for engineering and design work for short-term improvements to Deerfoot Trail.
  • The Government of Alberta and the City of Calgary are engaged in a long-term study of Deerfoot Trail that will be finalized this year. The core initial findings suggest:
    • Additional lanes northbound and southbound between Beddington Trail and Anderson/Bow Bottom Trail are required to meet growing traffic demands.
    • Major interchange improvements are required at Memorial Drive, 17 Avenue, Glenmore Trail, Southland Drive and Anderson/Bow Bottom Trail to reduce commute times and improve traffic flow.
  • Deerfoot Trail first opened to the public in 1971. It has been a full freeway since 2005.
    • When the road was built to its present configuration in 2005, Calgary had one million residents.
    • The population of Calgary is now approaching 1.3 million, excluding the rapidly growing populations of Airdrie and Chestermere.

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