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Zoo Flood Mitigation and Zoo Road Reconstruction Project

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Project Update

The second phase of piling began on Tuesday, September 13. Piling will only take place on weekdays between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.*

*While we are not anticipating any piling to occur outside of the hours listed above, should any unforeseen circumstances occur we will notify the community in advance.

Due to weather, phase two of detours have been delayed. Once they begin, Zoo Road will be fully closed. While the 12 Street S.E. Bridge will remain open, there will be no access onto Zoo Road past The Zoo Administration Building. Baines Bridge will re-open providing access to parking for St.Patrick’s Island. View the detour map.
We anticipate phase two of detours to begin prior to October 3, 2016.

Take a look at the progress we have made so far.

About the project

The zoo was severely impacted by the 2013 floods, incurring approximately $50 million in damages that included damage to buildings and other critical infrastructure, cost of protecting animals, and loss of revenue. Recent flood maps show that the zoo is at risk of near complete inundation during a 1:20 year event – that means regular flooding if this project isn’t completed.

The Zoo Flood Mitigation project will protect the zoo against future flooding, preserving one of Calgary’s greatest assets, and ensuring that the zoo will be able to teach and delight Calgarians and visitors for generations to come.

The project includes flood protection measures such as below-ground steel sheets, above-ground berms, and a pumping system. These measures will protect the zoo to one metre above the 2013 flood, which is half of a metre above the 1:100 year flood elevation.

The scope of the project has expanded to include a full reconstruction of Zoo Road to help all users feel safer and more comfortable, and ensure a safe emergency route our of Inglewood and Ramsay. Some of the improvements to Zoo Road include:

  • Wider, standardized vehicle lanes
  • A new four-metre pathway for pedestrians and cyclists
  • New lighting for both the road and the pathway
  • Improved sightlines as you approach and exit both the 12 Street S.E. Bridge and Baines Bridge
  • Safer pedestrian crossing at the zoo’s west gate

The Zoo Flood Mitigation/Zoo Road Reconstruction Project is coordinating with the 12 Street S.E. Bridge project.

The Calgary Zoo will be open and fully operational throughout construction. Public will access the zoo via the North Gate.

Construction began in March 2016 and is planned to be complete by late 2017. The project will be complete before spring 2018.

See rendering of the project here.

Detour Information

Zoo Road will be closed to through traffic starting Monday, March 7, 2016. From now until September 2016, vehicles will still be able to access St Patrick’s Island and The Zoo’s Administration Building via the 12 Street S.E. Bridge. However, there will be no access between Zoo Road and Memorial Drive. Click here to view this detour plan.

(Click to see larger image)

Starting on September 12, 2016 the detours will shift and Zoo Road will be fully closed. Vehicles will still be able to cross the 12 Street S.E. Bridge to access The Zoo Administration Building and Baines Bridge will reopen providing access to parking for St.Patrick’s Island. The detour plan for September 12, 2016 – November 2017 can be found here.

Public engagement

The project team presented to the Inglewood BRZ on October 6, 2015 and held public information sessions on October 8, 2015 and February 23, 2016.

Next steps

  • Phase two of detours to begin on Monday, September 12, 2016
  • Pile driving to resume Wednesday, September 13, 2016

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