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Building Better Roads: 2017 Construction Season Draws to a Close

For immediate release: October 26, 2017 - 2:00pm
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The 2017 Building Better Roads program focused mainly on improvements to street and sidewalk conditions in Saskatoon’s residential neighbourhoods. So far this year, 185 kilometers of roadways have been improved and 10 kilometers of sidewalks have been replaced in 44 neighbourhoods. Construction will continue until it snows or gets too cold.

“City Council has invested $61 million into the 2017 program, which is used for road construction and repair, pothole patching, sidewalk rehabilitation, back lane upgrades, line marking and street sweeping,” says Angela Gardiner, Acting General Manager of Transportation and Utilities. “We’ve continued to improve and coordinate road and sidewalk work to happen at the same time as underground utility work at a single location. This helps reduce the impact to residents and has resulted in cost savings and improved efficiency.”

For example, Gardiner says road and sidewalk repair was completed at the same time as extensive upgrades to water and sewer infrastructure in some of the city’s oldest neighbourhoods this summer.  

In 2017, construction projects have included intersection reconfigurations at 51st Street and Warman Road and 22nd Street and Diefenbaker Drive. In addition to improvements made under the Building Better Roads program, significant infrastructure work also began on interchanges at Boychuk Drive and Highway 16 and McOrmond Drive and College Drive. The Bridging to Tomorrow project, which includes construction of the new Traffic Bridge and North Commuter Parkway and bridge, continues and will wrap up in the fall of 2018.

Progress Snapshot

Roads Rehabilitated

2017: 185 lane kilometres
Since 2014: 809 lane kilometres

Sidewalks Replaced
2017: 10 kilometres
Since 2014: 31 kilometres     

Durable Line Markings
2017: 9 kilometres
Since 2014: 53 kilometres

Street Sweeping
2017: 21,000 tonnes of debris removed
Since 2014: 72,750 tonnes of debris removed

“When it comes to safety in our work zones, we are pleased to report that we’ve had zero life-threatening incidents this year,” says Gardiner. “However, we continue to receive reports of drivers deliberately disregarding work zone signs and barriers, so the 2018 Respect Work Zones campaign will investigate new ways to reach those people.”

Since 2014, when the Building Better Roads program began, $224 million has been invested in Saskatoon’s most aggressive road construction program ever. The proposed 2018 Operating budget recommends another commitment of $61 million for the program.

“Significant progress has been made over the past four years and we would like to thank residents for their patience and cooperation. The Building Better Roads program will continue to dramatically improve the condition, safety and longevity of Saskatoon’s road network for years to come.”

For more information about projects completed in 2017 and the Building Better Roads program, please visit saskatoon.ca/betterroads