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Valley Line West is in the design phase, with funding to cover a preliminary design review and preparing for procurement.

About the Project

It’s the second stage of the Valley Line, an urban-style 27 km line that will operate between Mill Woods in southeast Edmonton and Lewis Farms in west Edmonton.

Learn more about the history of public engagement or the project

Proposed Changes to Valley Line West’s Concept Plan

As part of its review of the 2013 preliminary design and grade separations assessment, the Valley Line West team is recommending changes to some key areas along the LRT alignment. These changes require amendments to the original concept plan.

City Council will hold a non-statutory public hearing to review the proposed concept plan amendments for Valley Line West LRT. Edmontonians are invited to attend to express their views or listen to the deliberations.

The Public Hearing is scheduled for:

Date: Wednesday March 21, 2018
Time: 9:30am 
Location: Council Chambers, City Hall

View the City Council Agenda and Administration's reports on the proposed concept plans (available March 15, 2018) or register to speak at the public hearing at

The proposed concept plan amendments for Valley Line West include:

  • Lewis Farms LRT terminus site - adjusting the location of LRT Stop and Light Rail Vehicle (LRV) storage facility and increasing the size of Park & Ride facility
  • 87 Avenue and 178 Street - adding an elevated LRT guideway over 178 Street along the south side of 87 Avenue
  • Jasper Place Transit Centre - maintaining the existing location
  • 156 Street and Stony Plain Road - realigning the LRT track and relocating the 156 Street LRT Stop between Stony Plain Road/155 Street and 99 Avenue/156 Street intersections 
  • Stony Plain Road and 149 Street - adding an urban interchange separating centre-running at-grade LRT on Stony Plain Road from 149 Street north-south traffic
  • 124 Street Stop - relocating the stop one block east, centred on 123 Street
  • LRT sidetrack - relocating the LRT sidetrack to the median of 104 Avenue, between 109 and 111 Street

102 Street to Lewis Farms

Map Legend

Design Phase Design Phase Park and Ride Park & Ride
Elevated Elevated Public Engagement Public Engagement Meeting(s)
Bridge Bridge Stops or Stations Stops or Stations
Kiss and Ride Kiss and Ride Transit Station Transit Centre

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Sustainable Urban Integration (SUI)?

With direction from the City and two years of public consultation, an extensive list of LRT Design Guidelines for Sustainable Urban Integration (SUI) was established. 

SUI looks beyond the building of tracks and trains to create neighbourhoods that are safe, attractive and connected. This involves designing livable, pedestrian-friendly environments and adding enhancements that reflect the feel and character of each of the communities along the LRT corridor.

Some examples of SUI enhancements include:

  • Building shared-use pathways, sidewalks and trails
  • Adding bike lanes that connect to the City’s existing bike lane network
  • Designing pedestrian-friendly zones around stops and stations
  • Using enhanced landscaping and streetscaping along the length of the corridor to create a more natural environment
  • Incorporating organic materials such as stone and wood wherever possible

These guidelines were incorporated into the LRT Design Guide, a document that became the foundation for specific design requirements included in the Valley Line LRT - Stage 1 Project Agreement.

Transforming Edmonton Post

Sustainable Urban Integration - Connecting Edmonton to its Routes

What is Property​ ​Acquisition and Expropriation?

City Council considered the impact on property owners when approving the route for the Valley Line LRT and ultimately selected an alignment that minimizes the need for the acquisition of private property. However, in some cases, privately-held property will need to be acquired in order for the project to move forward. Potential property needs for the Valley Line were assessed during the preliminary engineering process completed in 2013.

If a property owner and the City property agent cannot reach an agreement to purchase the property, the City may proceed with expropriation of the property as a last resort.

Why is the LRT designed to run primarily at street level, and how is it made compatible with car traffic?

The Valley Line LRT is designed to meet the overall goals of LRT expansion while fully integrating with the communities it serves. The low-floor, urban style LRT allows stops to be small, basically a raised curb and sidewalk with a shelter. Stops can be spaced closer together, making LRT accessible to more people. It costs less than elevated or subway systems.

The Valley Line LRT will run alongside traffic in designated lanes and follow the posted speed limits. The LRT will cross through an intersection during a green light and stop at a red light, just like the other vehicles on the road. The LRT may get green light priority at some intersections, but because no crossing arms will be lowered, cross-traffic won’t have to wait additional time before and after the LRT passes. As a result, increases in wait times are usually minor.

Another benefit of keeping the LRT at street level is that no overhead structures or tunnels are required. Going above or below street level creates visual and physical barriers in the community that reduce comfort and accessibility for pedestrians and cyclists moving through or within the area.

When is above or below street level considered?

There are some locations where going above or below street level are required. For instance, on Valley Line Southeast, the LRT crosses CP and CN train tracks. Due to rail safety requirements and technical difficulties with having LRT tracks and train tracks intersect, the LRT has to go above or below street level for these crossings.

At other locations, street level crossings are incompatible with the style of road. For example, going above or below street level is required when an LRT crosses over Anthony Henday Drive or any of the streets in Edmonton’s “inner ring road”; Whitemud Drive, 75 Street, Yellowhead Trail and 170 Street.

Going above or below street level is also considered where traffic volume is already causing intersection gridlock and there is no other way to provide relief.

Why not elevate or tunnel the entire LRT?

A fully elevated or underground LRT would be inconsistent with the City’s vision, and it would be very costly. This higher cost would result in a much longer time to expand the system and realize the benefits.

What would going above or below street level involve?

Going above street level would require a bridge over the intersection for the LRT vehicles to travel on. The bridge is called an elevated guideway, and consists of a single deep beam that supports the weight of the bridge, LRT vehicles, snow, rain, wind, and so on.

The elevated guideway ramps up and down for about two blocks on each side of the intersection to get to its required height. It is typically supported on large concrete piers centered below the beam, but sometimes may need to be supported on a second layer of deep beams that span across the road onto concrete columns.

Due to the close proximity of the elevated station at West Edmonton Mall going underground is not considered feasible at 178 Street. Because an LRT stop can’t be placed on a slope, going above or below street level would usually mean that LRT stops intended to be placed near the intersection would need to be either shifted further from the intersection or built above street level as well.

Building above or below street level would be a departure from the City’s vision for a sustainable, urban, integrated, low-floor LRT system designed to blend into surrounding mature communities.

An elevated crossing would be more of a visual and potentially physical barrier. Building above or below street level would involve extending the tracks above ground from the elevated West Edmonton Mall station westward to cross over 178 Street and ramp down to ground level east of 182 Street. The 182 Street LRT stop is far enough away from 178 Street that it would probably be unaffected.

How are travel time savings calculated?

Travel times are calculated using transportation modelling software to measure travel times for vehicle, LRT and traffic congestion.

If plans for Valley Line involve LRT priority is removing them an alternative to going above or below street level?

Plans call for partial priority for the LRT at some major intersections where the green signal can be extended slightly to allow the LRT to pass before it turns red.

However, the LRT may still get a red signal that will require it to stop. The assessment includes determining if a reasonable balance of intersection movements can be achieved.

Where We Are

Two open houses were held on November 15 and 16, 2017 to share refinements to the LRT preliminary design. The results of the recent assessment of LRT crossings at key intersections were also provided, including what we heard during the previous engagements.

In 2016, the Valley Line West received funding through the Government of Canada’s Public Transit Infrastructure Fund (PTIF) to review the preliminary design that was completed in 2013.

This an important step, as it will acknowledge any changes that have occurred since the original work was done.

The funding also covers work to determine the most appropriate project delivery method (P3, for example) and to develop a business case for construction funding. This work will position the City to be procurement ready when new funding becomes available.

While there are no timelines for additional funding, the City hopes to be ready to initiate the procurement phase as early as 2018. Once additional funding is secured, it is anticipated it would take about 1-year to select a contractor for the Valley Line West and another 5-years to complete construction.

Valley Line West Booklet (37 MB)

Note: All images and renderings remain subject to change and are not final. Final designs will be shared publicly when complete.


Download or view interactive map.

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Telephone 780-496-4874

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