As one of the largest federal custodians, Parks Canada manages a variety of real property and infrastructure assets. In Banff National Park, the infrastructure portfolio is wide-ranging and includes assets such as highways, bridges, contemporary and historic buildings, trails, campgrounds, water and wastewater treatment facilities, visitor centres and operations compounds.
Parks Canada’s Federal Infrastructure Investment Program
Announced in 2015, Parks Canada is investing $3 billion over five years to rehabilitate infrastructure assets within national historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas across Canada.
This historic investment supports conservation while making our infrastructure safer and more appealing to visitors.
A significant amount of Parks Canada’s existing infrastructure assets require action now, and the paving projects, rock and slope stabilisation, and rehabilitation of bridges planned as part of this historic investment will provide an improved visitor experience for the almost five million visitors to the mountain national parks each year, while protecting the ecological and cultural integrity of our national treasures.
What to know before you visit
Construction Projects in Banff National Park
Infrastructure Project - Minor visitor impact
Infrastructure Project - Closure
AltaLink Transmission Line Rebuild
Work has begun on Altalink's transmission line rebuild project. The electrical transmission line that that runs between the Town of Banff and Village of Lake Louise (parallel and adjacent to the Bow Valley Parkway) is being be replaced over a five year period, starting in 2016. These upgrades will reduce power outages in the immediate area and increase reliability of the electric system.
Site and access preparation work will occur on the transmission line right-of-way and access trails leading to the right-of-way at various locations, including near the Lake Louise and Banff town sites and along the Bow Valley Parkway. Construction crews, trucks carrying materials and excavation activities may be noticeable in these areas. Helicopters may be used to transport materials to support construction activities.
During construction, short sections of recreational trails near construction areas will, on occasion, be temporarily closed and inaccessible to the public due to safety reasons. Signage will be present at these short closed sections.
For more information: 551L Transmission Line Rebuild
Thank you for your patience while this project is underway.
This season, Parks Canada is investing millions of dollars in projects along the Trans-Canada Highway and Icefields Parkway that will ensure safe and reliable roadways, and an improved visitor experience. In 2016, these projects include:
What: Icefields Parkway (93N) Improvements
Where: Icefields Parkway (93N), Banff National Park
When: May through November
Seven days a week, 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Why: To ensure continued safe travel for motorists and cyclists, including access/intersection improvements, shoulder widening and paving.
Note: Expect speed reductions, single lane alternating traffic, and delays of up to 30 minutes, with no stops on Sundays or long weekends. During July and August 2-way traffic flow will be maintained during daylight hours, however, lane reductions at night may be required.
Plan ahead. For road conditions and current highway construction in Alberta, visit www.511.alberta.ca or dial 511 (inside Alberta only). For highways in British Columbia, visit www.drivebc.ca or call 1-800-550-4997.
Rehabilitation of Protection Mountain Campground
Work continues at Protection Mountain on the Bow Valley Parkway, which has been closed since 2012 after an intensive hazard tree project. With an anticipated re-opening in 2017, visitors can expect improved views, re-paved roads, an improved RV camping offer and overall refreshed facilities. Visitors can still enjoy nearby Castle Mountain campground.
Temporary Closure: Cascades of Time Garden and Administration Building Parking Lot
Like all gardens and infrastructure, the Cascades of Time Garden and the adjacent parking lot require care and maintenance. From September, after the long weekend, to November 2016, there will be no parking available and no access to the garden for the following projects.
Administration Building utility and parking lot rehabilitation:
The parking lot will be reconstructed and resurfaced, and many of the utilities and other underground services will be replaced. Parking will not be available with the exception of three reserved service stalls, and one stall for persons with disabilities. The construction work will cease over the winter months and the parking lot will be open during this time. Work on the parking lot will continue in the spring which will require a second closure. The Administration Building utility and parking lot rehabilitation project is projected to be completed in late spring 2017.
Cascades of Time Garden rehabilitation:
The historic Reflecting and Cretaceous ponds will be restored to once again hold water. When the parking lot reopens in November 2016, the areas surrounding the ponds will be restricted to construction crews only as they continue their work until the anticipated completion of the project in summer 2017.
As of September 19, there will be no access to the Cascades of Time Garden and no pedestrian access through the Administration grounds. The Administration Building will only be accessible to pedestrians from the combined Texas/pedestrian gate on Mountain Avenue.
When completed, visitors will enjoy a rejuvenated garden with operating ponds, and a rehabilitated parking lot.
While Parks Canada works to restore this site, the public is invited to visit other day use areas and attractions in the park. For alternate picnicking sites no more than 1 km away, consider the Cave and Basin National Historic Site day use area; Central Park, located along the Bow River Trail, behind the Banff Park Museum National Historic Site; or the Banff Recreation Grounds on Birch Avenue. For ideas of locations offering excellent photography opportunities, visit Banff and Lake Louise Tourism's lists online.
What to know before you visit
When visiting or driving through Banff National Park, you may encounter one or more construction zones. To help you plan your visit, please see below for a list of current and upcoming projects. Additional trip planning information is also available by visiting:
Important Bulletins | Closures and Restrictions | Trail Report |Avalanche Bulletin | Weather Forecast
For information about Alberta highway conditions inside and outside of the mountain parks visit 511 Alberta, call 1-855-391-9743 toll-free, or dial 511 (inside Alberta only).
For British Columbia highway conditions visit Drive BC or call 1-800-550-4997 toll-free.