The traffic flow around west Regina is getting a long-awaited boost.
After about two years of construction, the West Regina Bypass is to open on Tuesday when the provincial government cuts a ribbon to unveil the $113-million expressway.
The project involves an eight-kilometre route with four lanes, a bridge across the Canadian Pacific Railway tracks and an overpass at the Trans-Canada Highway.
“And when the West Regina Bypass is done, it will be the principal access to and from the Global Transportation Hub,” a government spokesman said on Monday, asking not to be named.
The Trans-Canada overpass, which continued to be a flurry of construction activity on Monday west of Lewvan Drive, is a key component in keeping traffic — particularly large commercial vehicles — moving quickly through the district on the Queen City’s outskirts.
“What it will do is provide a free flow of traffic. Right now, any traffic making left-hand turns there has to come to a complete stop,” the spokesman said of eastbound and southbound vehicles at signals at the intersection along Highway 1.
“And some of the really long truck configurations that go to and from the Global Transportation Hub — there are triple-trailer units that go through there — can take 22 seconds to make a left-hand turn from a full stop.”
Despite one ramp remaining to be built and what the spokesman called “clean-up work” including guardrails and curb-forming ahead, the overpass will be opened during an event for media at 9 a.m.
And the bypass is slated for an extension to the north.
“Ultimately,” the spokesman said, “we’ll continue the West Bypass from Dewdney Avenue all the way to Highway 11.”