March 2017

Construction of the Mechanized River Valley Access (MRVA) began in March 2016 and is anticipated to be completed by late 2017. The City of Edmonton thanks drivers, businesses, and trail users for your patience as we complete this exciting new addition to our river valley.

Completed Work

  • A full wayfinding design package is complete.
  • The funicular has been installed.
  • The trail connection to the existing stair has been paved.

Work in progress and planned for March

  • Ongoing funicular work includes emergency stairs, a storage garage, call buttons, and connecting the funicular to the City’s network.
  • Steel for the stair, elevator, and upper platform. 

Upcoming Work

  • The project team is working with other departments to widen the sidewalk outside the project boundary at the Hotel Macdonald to accommodate increased pedestrian and cyclist traffic.
  • River Valley Parks are working on a design to upgrade the existing stair this spring.
  • Wood for the promenade will be installed in the summer.

Trail Addition! 

A new addition to the project is a 1.8 m wide, 53 m long trail from the Low Level Bridge to the shared-use path near the pedestrian bridge. This trail will run parallel to the Grierson Hill Road sidewalk and the shared-use trail that runs under the Low Level Bridge.

The path is needed to create a trail connection between the Low Level Bridge and River Valley trails east of the MRVA project.

The project team considered a connection closer to the elevator, however this would have necessitated long switchbacks, retaining walls, and guard rails.

The new, narrow path width will limit the impact on trees and will tie into the new pedestrian bridge elevator. The additional work fits within the existing project budget.

River Valley Alliance (RVA)

In 2013, the City of Edmonton received $72.9 million in funding for five initiatives as part of the River Valley Alliance (RVA) Capital Project. Of this, the RVA contributed $48.6 million, and the City of Edmonton contributed $1.7 million. The remaining funding was granted from the provincial government. The Mechanized River Valley Access project is part of the City’s RVA initiatives and has a budget of $24 million.

The RVA is a collaboration of the seven municipalities along the capital region’s North Saskatchewan River Valley that share a common goal – to preserve, protect and enhance the river valley park system for the year round accessibility and enjoyment of citizens and visitors.

In January 2013, the RVA launched a major $90 million Capital Project that includes 13 priority initiatives in 18 sites. The Government of Canada is contributing up to $30 million through the Building Canada Fund – Major Infrastructure Component towards the RVA Capital Project. The Government of Alberta is also contributing $30 million through the Capital Region River Valley Park grant.

Project Overview
The MRVA will connect the top of bank at 100 St near the Hotel Macdonald to the river valley trail system near the Low Level Bridge. It will provide connectivity between downtown and the river valley, while the thoughtful design and mechanized components will improve accessibility for all users. The existing wood staircase will be reconfigured and partially re-purposed within the new design. 

Click here to view the latest site photos. 
Did you know?
The urban staircase will be 4.5-7.5 m wide, and include room for people to run the stairs, areas to sit and enjoy the view, and a bike rail along its length.
Questions about the Project?

Project Officer
Henry Maisonneuve - 780.495.9923

Program Manager
Michael Schneider - 780.496.7829

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