Alberta commits new funding to Edmonton LRT

The Government of Alberta is providing an additional $176-million grant to the City of Edmonton for construction of the southeast leg of the Valley Line LRT.

The funding was originally provided to Edmonton in 2014 as an interest-free loan. The province is now converting this loan into a grant, with funds coming from Climate Leadership Plan revenues.

“The Southeast Valley Line LRT is a priority for our government, as it will help to connect Edmonton residents and visitors to essential services, education, and jobs,” said Brian Mason, minister of transportation.”Funding for this project will help to make life better for Albertans by supporting an affordable, accessible and environmentally sustainable transportation option in Alberta’s capital city.”

The southeast leg of the Valley Line will run 13 kilometres between downtown and Mill Woods and will support transit-oriented development along the entire right-of-way, including in the Quarters, Holyrood and Mill Woods neighbourhoods.

“I’m pleased to see the province’s continued support and commitment for LRT expansion in our city, which itself is a key part of our greater transit strategy for the Edmonton Metro region,” said Don Iveson, mayor of Edmonton. “I look forward to working with our funding partners on upcoming projects which will bring even greater transit choice to Edmontonians.”

This decision brings the Government of Alberta’s total contribution for the Southeast Valley Line LRT to $600 million, or one-third of the $1.8-billion project cost. The construction of the project is expected to support 17,000 direct and indirect jobs in Alberta and another 1,600 in other parts of Canada. Up to 150 permanent jobs are expected to be supported for the operations and maintenance of the Southeast Valley Line.

The Government of Alberta will continue working with the City of Edmonton as detailed plans and finances for the city’s full LRT expansion are developed.

As of March 2016, the Government of Alberta had already committed $424 million toward the Southeast Valley Line LRT project: $274 million for construction and an additional $150-million grant for the Southeast Valley Line to match federal funding under the former federal government’s New Building Canada Fund.

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