More than 7,000 people use the 1st Street at 9th Avenue underpass every day. Last spring, a city committee voted unanimously to move forward with a new design that will make it brighter, safer and more inviting. Part of the funding for this project will come from private sector partners and nearby businesses.
The underpass was built in 1908, and the concrete is starting to deteriorate. The upgrade will reinforce and restore, provide new lighting, and clad it in beautiful new artwork that will also be easier to clean and discourage graffiti.
The underpass design, by the Marc Boutin Architectural Collaborative Inc + El Dorado Inc features two layers of ‘skin’, which will help with the water issues in the underpass. The outer skin will have large-scale photographic images of rolling prairie to the east, and soaring mountains to the west. The inner skin will be perforated aluminum – when walking north the perforations will read ‘DOWNTOWN’, and when walking south, ‘BELTLINE’.
The design has already received a Canadian Architect Award of Excellence.
This content represents the personal views and opinions of the Ward Councillor and should not be taken as a statement of policy of The City of Calgary. The inclusion of any external content does not imply endorsement by The City of Calgary.