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Council to consider location options for potential future third bridge

​The potential location of a possible third crossing over the Oldman River was discussed at City Council Tuesday.

Lethbridge City Council voted unanimously to have City Administration investigate further potential site or sites for a possible third bridge farther south from the current proposed location, which is near Riverstone on the west and would join Scenic Drive on the east.

In a non-binding ballot question at the 2021 Municipal Election, residents voted 60.41 per cent yes to "Do you agree that city council should approve plans to construct a 3rd bridge prior to 2030 as a municipal capital project priority?"

A full background is available here: https://www.lethbridge.ca/City-Government/Elections/Pages/Question-on-the-2021-Municipal-Ballot---Third-Bridge.aspx

With a goal of identifying potential funding sources, Council has also asked for Administration to identify an anticipated cost to construct the third river crossing at the site or sites identified.

"It would appear that any third river crossing built within City limits would likely have to be solely funded by City funds which, because of the cost involved, would undoubtedly require significant monies to be borrowed," says Acting Mayor Rajko Dodic, who introduced Tuesday's motion. "If the potential bridge was further south, I would suggest that there is a greater likelihood of receiving financial contribution from other levels of government. It should also be noted that there has been significant growth in West Lethbridge since the Chinook Trail option was considered which may factor into whether the initial route would continue to remain the preferred choice."

In a City Council resolution dated November 30, 2009, Council resolved that the Chinook Trail be reconfirmed as the future river crossing (third river bridge) location. A proposed amendment at that time, to seek additional right-of-way to be acquired for an additional site farther south of the Chinook Trail option, was defeated in a 5-4 vote.

Council has asked Administration to report back the findings by September 2022.