Enhancement project update: Work on the Funicular is over halfway complete. We are waiting for delivery of the new glass roof. In the meantime, the Funicular has reopened for public use. Please note it will be out of service again for a few days next week to complete this project. We anticipate it will be open in time for Christmas.
The Mechanized River Valley Access project makes the river valley more accessible to people of all ages and abilities. It runs from the top of 100 Street near the Hotel Macdonald to the river valley trail system near the low level bridge.
Edmonton’s Funicular will be out of service throughout the month of December for enhancement work to improve accessibility and safety. Improvements include:
Installation of a heating loop in the door sill to prevent ice formation at the lower doors
Installation of a glass roof over the lower doors to help reduce issues during winter weather
Installation of surface raised markers, handrails, and graphic signage at the staircase for people with visual impairments
Modified bike rails on the urban stair and elevator staircase to improve use
All the above work will be undertaken within the approved project funding.
Components of the Project
The Promontory (Top Platform)
The platform allows users to take advantage of the amazing views from the top of the bank near the Hotel Macdonald.
A place to linger, to stop and sit, or to get in your daily workout. There is a bike rail for cyclists that runs the length of the stairs.
The 100 Street Funicular
With plenty of space for wheelchairs, walkers, strollers, and bikes, the glass-enclosed funicular descends from the top of the bank to the promenade above the valley floor. It fits up to 20 people.
It includes a grassy seating area with benches and an art piece called Turbulent inspired by the unique water patterns of the North Saskatchewan River and created by Jill Anhold, based in Vancouver.
Connecting the promenade to the lookout, the bridge provides safe passage across Grierson Hill Road.
The Frederick G. Todd Lookout
A glass railing and built-in seating allows a seamless way to take in the flow of the river and the downtown skyline.
From the bridge, an elevator and a staircase will connect the Mechanized River Valley Access to the existing trail system and Louise McKinney Park, the Low Level Bridge, and the Rossdale/River Crossing area. It holds up to 10 people.
Mechanized access will create a new destination in our city: an innovative, barrier-free system that will allow people to enjoy both our vibrant downtown and our amazing river valley within minutes.
The $24 million project budget was funded by the River Valley Alliance supported by the provincial and federal governments, and the City of Edmonton.
On June 23, 2015, City Council approved the construction of this project. Construction began in March 2016, and was completed early December 2017.