Highway 8 shield
Highway 8
Route information
Maintained by Alberta Ministry of Transportation
Length16.9 km[1] (10.5 mi)
Existed1980–present
Major junctions
West end Hwy 22 near Redwood Meadows
East end Hwy 201 in Calgary
Location
CountryCanada
ProvinceAlberta
Specialized and rural municipalitiesRocky View County
Major citiesCalgary
Highway system
Hwy 7 Hwy 9

Alberta Provincial Highway No. 8, commonly referred to as Highway 8, is a highway in Southern Alberta that connects Highway 22 in Rocky View County, just north of Redwood Meadows, to Calgary.

Route description

Highway 8 begins west of Calgary in a rural area of Rocky View County.[2] Its terminus is a roundabout with Highway 22 in the Elbow River valley after which it proceeds east, paralleling the Elbow River through agricultural lands as a two-lane rural highway with a posted speed limit of 100 km/h (62 mph).[3][4] In Rocky View County the highway is alternately designated as Township Road 241, and after it crosses Range Road 32 the speed limit reduces to 80 km/h (50 mph) as the highway bisects the estate residential area of Elbow Valley. After a signalized intersection at Clearwater Drive / Lott Creek Boulevard, the highway then descends into the Elbow River valley before veering slightly north to cross the river, entering Calgary city limits almost immediately thereafter at 101 Street SW.[2] East of 101 Street SW, Highway 8 becomes Highway 201 with the roadway becoming part of Stoney Trail, with it becoming a freeway and meeting a stack interchange with Sarcee Trail and Glenmore Trail that opened in 2020.[5] The West Ring Road portion of Stoney Trail, which is to connect Highway 8 with the Trans Canada Highway (Highway 1), is scheduled to be completed in 2024,[6] but in the mean time Highway 8 becomes Highway 201 when entering Calgary.

Many commercial maps show Highway 8 continuing east through Calgary along Glenmore Trail to Highway 2 (Deerfoot Trail); however, the route is unsigned.

History

In the late 1800s, Calgary was a small town at the confluence of the Elbow and Bow Rivers. A lightly travelled road led away from the town to the southwest, following the alignment of present-day Richmond Road.[7] In the early 20th century it was called South Morley Road before being renamed to Richmond Road, and eventually led west to Springbank, Alberta remaining north of the Elbow River.[8] A spur from the road at 101 Street SW proceeding due south across the river had been constructed by the mid‑1920s, known as Bragg Creek Road.[9] South of the river, it veered west following the present day alignment of Highway 8 to its current terminus, where it turned south to Bragg Creek on the alignment of present-day Highway 22.

The first use of Highway 8 was as a small connector route that connected Calgary with the town of Bowness. Highway 8 began at 10 Street NW, which at the time was part of Highway 1 which passed through Downtown Calgary, crossed the Bow River along the Louise Bridge, and proceeded north and west towards Cochrane and Banff.[10] Highway 8 travelled west on Kensington Road and Parkdale Boulevard along the north side of the Bow River, becoming Bowness Road when it entered the village of Montgomery. It crossed the original Shouldice Bridge (renamed the John Hextal Bridge)[11] into Bowness and ended near Bowness Park. The highway was decommissioned in c. 1964 when Montgomery and Bowness were annexed by the City of Calgary.

In the mid 1970s, Alberta introduced its Secondary Highway system (present day 500-900 series highways), and Richmond Road west of Calgary was designated as Secondary Highway 559, but was renumbered in 1979 to Highway 8.[12][13] Highway 8 first followed Richmond Road into Calgary to Sarcee Trail, and followed Sarcee Trail and Glenmore Trail as an unsigned highway to Deerfoot Trail. When the residential community of Signal Hill was developed in the late 1980s and Highway 8 was realigned in 1992 to the south along a new two lane roadway which also served as a western extension of Glenmore Trail.[14] Despite it being part of Glenmore Trail, the new roadway ended a T-intersection at the transition between the existing Sarcee and Glenmore Trails;[15] resulting in "Glenmore Trail" commonly referring to the roadway east of Sarcee Trail and "Highway 8" referring to the roadway west of Sarcee Trail, despite both officially sharing the same designations.

When the Calgary Ring Road alignment was established, it was determined that the West Leg and Southwest Leg would follow and area just east of 101 Street SW from Highway 1 south to Highway 8, travel east on Highway 8 to Sarcee Trail, and then resume heading south through the eastern perimeter of the Tsuutʼina Nation – as part of the construction the effected area of Highway 8 would become part of Stoney Trail. On October 1, 2020, upgrades to Highway 8 and the stack interchange were opened and the highway inside the ring road was redesigned as Highway 201.

Future

As part of the Southwest Ring Road construction, approximately 2 km (1.2 mi) Highway 8 will be twinned west of Calgary city limits,[16] while a new Y-interchange at the eastern terminus of Highway 8 is scheduled to be completed in 2024 as part of the West Ring Road.[17] Long-term plans call to twin the remainder of the route to Highway 22 as well as replacing the existing roundabout with an interchange,[18][19] with provisions for a western extension beyond Highway 22.[20]

Major intersections

Rural/specialized municipalityLocationkm[1]miExitDestinationsNotes
Rocky View County0.00.0 Hwy 22 – Cochrane, Bragg CreekRoundabout
Elbow Valley11.47.1Range Road 31At-grade, traffic signals
14.79.1Lott Creek Boulevard / Clearwater DriveAt-grade, traffic signals
15.99.9Crosses the Elbow River
City of Calgary16.510.3101 Street SWCalgary city limits
16.910.5 Stoney Trail (Hwy 201 north)Interchange under construction; becomes Hwy 201 (Stoney Trail)
19.512.12669 Street SW / Discovery Ridge BoulevardExit numbers follow Hwy 201
20.5–
22.2
12.7–
13.8
24Westhills Way / Tsuut'ina ParkwaySouthbound exit; northbound entrance; Tsuut'ina Parkway under construction (unopened)
22 Stoney Trail (Hwy 201 south) / Glenmore Trail  / Sarcee TrailFormer eastern extent of signed Hwy 8; Stoney Trail becomes Tsuut′ina Trail south of interchange
See Glenmore Trail
31.419.5 Deerfoot Trail (Hwy 2) – Airport (YYC), Edmonton, Lethbridge
Glenmore Trail
Hwy 2 exit 248; former Hwy 8 eastern terminus; Glenmore Trail continues east
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
  •       Closed/former
  •       Unopened

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Google (2021-01-18). "Highway 8 Overview" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 2021-01-18.
  2. ^ a b "2016 Provincial Highway 1-216 Progress Chart" (PDF). Alberta Transportation. March 2016. Archived (PDF) from the original on November 12, 2016. Retrieved November 12, 2016.
  3. ^ Google (May 2016). "Highway 8 and Highway 22 Roundabout". Google Street View. Retrieved October 23, 2016. ((cite web)): |author= has generic name (help)
  4. ^ Google (June 2016). "Highway 8 in Rocky View County". Google Street View. Retrieved October 23, 2016. ((cite web)): |author= has generic name (help)
  5. ^ White, Ryan (2020-10-01). "Tsuut'ina Trail section of Calgary ring road opens to traffic, ceremony interrupted by displaced family". CTV Calgary. CTV News. Retrieved 2021-01-16.
  6. ^ "South Project". West Calgary Ring Road. Retrieved 2021-01-15.
  7. ^ Wheeler, Arthur O.; Ridgeway, Jas. H. (1894). "Preliminary map of a portion of the District of Alberta showing Canadian irrigation surveys during 1894". Peel's Prairie Provinces - University of Alberta. Department of the Interior. Retrieved October 26, 2016.
  8. ^ Harrison, Edward; Ponton, Gerald M. (1912). "Harrison and Ponton's map of the City of Calgary and environs". Peel's Prairie Provinces - University of Alberta. Calgary: Great West Drafting and Blue Print Co. Retrieved October 26, 2016.
  9. ^ "Calgary District, Alberta". Peel's Prairie Provinces - University of Alberta. Ottawa: Topographical Survey of Canada, Department of the Interior. February 1926. Retrieved October 26, 2016.
  10. ^ The H.M. Gousha Company (1956). Shell Map of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba (Map). The Shell Oil Company. Calgary inset.
  11. ^ "John Hextall Bridge (Shouldice Bridge) - HistoricBridges.org". historicbridges.org. 2015-05-17. Retrieved 2021-01-16.
  12. ^ Travel Alberta (1978–1979). Alberta Official Road Map (Map). 1:1,500,000. The Province of Alberta. § L-5.
  13. ^ Travel Alberta (1980–1981). Alberta Official Road Map (Map). 1:1,500,000. The Province of Alberta. § L-5.
  14. ^ "1992/1993 Annual Report". Edmonton: Alberta Transportation and Utilities. 1993. p. 27. Retrieved November 17, 2016 – via University of Alberta Libraries.
  15. ^ Travel Alberta (1995). Alberta Official Road Map (Map). The Province of Alberta. Calgary inset.
  16. ^ "Calgary Ring Road update - frequently asked questions". Alberta Transportation. Government of Alberta. 2014-06-13. Retrieved 2021-01-18.
  17. ^ "South project: Old Banff Coach Road SW to Hwy 8" (PDF) (Map). West Calgary Ring Road. Government of Alberta. June 2020. Retrieved 2021-01-16.
  18. ^ AECOM (April 2011). "Highway 8 Twinning" (PDF). Alberta Transportation. Government of Alberta. Retrieved 2021-01-18.
  19. ^ Stantec (2018-09-07). "Figure 4-1: Hwy 8 & Hwy 22 Functional Planning Study | Recommended Interchange Plan - Interim State" (PDF). Alberta Transportation. Government of Alberta. Retrieved 2021-01-18.
  20. ^ Stantec (2018-09-07). "Figure 4-2: Hwy 8 & Hwy 22 Functional Planning Study | Recommended Interchange Plan - Ultimate State" (PDF). Alberta Transportation. Government of Alberta. Retrieved 2021-01-18.