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Posted on: April 25, 2022

Banff’s St. Julien Road closes for reconstruction

St Julien Concept Image News

St. Julien Road is closed to public access starting Monday, April 25, and continuing for the duration of the project, which is scheduled to conclude in the fall. Members of the public travelling by vehicle, bicycle and foot will be detoured. 
 
 Vehicle access to Banff Centre is available only via Buffalo Street and Tunnel Mountain Drive. Only residents who live in the construction zone will have periodic vehicle access, and only when access is safe. At certain phases in the project, homes along St. Julien Road will lose all vehicle access to their property. A temporary walkway on St. Julien Road beside the construction will be made available for St. Julien Road residents only.

The Tunnel Mountain Trailhead parking lot will be closed all summer. Although the parking lot is a Banff Centre property leasehold, the institution has provided the parking lot for the construction laydown area through 2022. The lot will be used for storage of equipment, materials, and work crew resources and an office.

“This project will create significant disruption this summer for people who live on the street and for hikers heading up Tunnel Mountain, but the long-term benefits of reconstruction will provide safety enhancements, longevity of sewer, water and road infrastructure, and overall more enjoyable experience on this important collector road, long overdue for renewal,” said project manager Stephen Allan, engineering coordinator for the Town.

Pedestrian access to the popular Tunnel Mountain Trail will be detoured as construction affects the sidewalk. Depending on the construction phase, hikers will have two routes:

  • A detour south on Otter Street and west on Wolverine Street to a location where they can cross St. Julien Road to the lower trailhead
  • When the lower trailhead is closed, hikers will use the Otter Street detour and the Ken Madsen Trail to Banff Centre and across to Tunnel Mountain Drive, which connects to the upper trailhead

The renewal involves replacement of the sewer system, which has an access point at the base of the lower trailhead stairs. The lower trailhead will be closed in this phase and in phases of road reconstruction and utility replacement.

Reconstruction will involve excavation of the existing road and the sidewalk, replacement of the entire sewer and water pipes the length of the road and connections to all homes, road resurfacing, creation of a storm drainage system, and construction of a separated trail the length of the St. Julien Road.

The separated trail will create a safer street for pedestrians and cyclists travelling to the Tunnel Mountain Trailhead and Banff Centre. The project replaces aging underground infrastructure and improves safety at all intersections. New street lighting will also improve safety. The new storm drainage will remove current ice issues and extend the life of the new roadway. 

The project had been identified as needing road replacement and a trail addition for a number of years, without a date being set. The addition of the need to replace aging utility systems added the project to the Capital Budget plan. The redesign of the street involved public input in 2021 on design options for vehicle access points, one-way routing, trail development, and landscaping. 

Banff Town Council approved the budget in January 2022, and a contractor based in the Bow Valley was selected in the tender. Construction site preparation has included removal of trees to allow for widening of the public right-of-way, necessary for adding the trail and drainage.

Full details and weekly updates about the project are available at banff.ca/StJulienRoad.
  
Questions about the project are to be forwarded to stjulienroad@banff.ca 

For media questions, contact:
Jason Darrah, Communications Director
Town of Banff
Office: 403.762.1207  
Jason.darrah@banff.ca 
banff.ca 

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