Highway 834 bypass
Budget 2017 includes funding to begin the process for building a bypass around the town of Tofield for Highway 834. Currently, the highway a designated over-size load corridor runs through the middle of the town past residential areas and an elementary school. The new alignment will see the highway removed from town to the east, creating efficiencies for industry and increasing both safety and peace and quiet for Tofield residents.
The project is estimated to cost between $10 to 15 million. It will include:
- Construction of a new five kilometer, two lane highway east of the town of Tofield; and
- Realignment of a section of Highway 14 south of Tofield where it intersects Highway 834 to provide a longer, safer distance for traffic to stop at a railway crossing adjacent to the intersection.
Selection of an engineering consultant will begin in 2017. Once design and engineering are complete, construction could begin as early as Spring 2020, and be completed by Fall of the same year. Once the design process is complete, a more detailed project timeline will be available.
Highway 834 is an over-dimensional load corridor whose current alignment brings it right into the town of Tofield, through residential areas and near to playing fields and schools, including CW Sears elementary school.
Each year, over 900 loads are over-sized, requiring special permits from Alberta Transportation. In 2016, the average daily traffic count on Highway 834 at the Highway 626 intersection in the middle of town was 1400 vehicles, including an average of 92 semi-trailers per day.
The new alignment to the east of town will reduce congestion and delays for industry and other highway users while separating industry and other highway users from local vehicle and pedestrian traffic.