EDMONTON — The Province of Alberta is giving a boost to Edmonton’s Valley Line LRT, announcing an additional $176-million grant for the project.
According to the province, the funding was initially provided to Edmonton in 2014 as an interest-free loan. Alberta 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, Alberta minister of transportation and minister of infrastructure, in a press release. "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 Quarters, Holyrood and Mill Woods neighbourhoods will benefit from the southeast leg of the project which will encourage transit-oriented development along the right-of-way, the release states.
Mayor Don Iveson stated he was pleased to see the province's continued support and commitment for LRT expansion in the city, which itself is a key part of the greater transit strategy for the Edmonton Metro region.
The new funding brings the province's total contribution for the Southeast Valley Line LRT to $600 million, or one-third of the $1.8-billion project cost.
Officials anticipate work on the project will 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.