Lake Louise Drive Rehabilitation and Modernization

Banff National Park

Construction on Lake Louise Drive will begin as early as April 2024. Summer 2024 visitors are reminded to plan ahead, prepare for delays, and book a shuttle if they are planning to see Lake Louise or Moraine Lake.

Lake Louise Drive is a very popular roadway, hosting about 1 million vehicles per year. The road connects the community of Lake Louise to upper Lake Louise and Moraine Lake, which are two of the most visited destinations in Banff National Park. Over the last ten years vehicle traffic on Lake Louise Drive has risen by roughly 70%.

The Lake Louise Area Strategy, in the Banff National Park Management Plan (2022), has identified this road as a major opportunity to improve ecological integrity and visitor experience in the Lake Louise area.

Proposed 2024 construction may include:

  • Asphalt resurfacing and road repairs.

 

  • Roundabout proposed for the intersection at Sentinel Road, Fairview Drive, and Lake Louise Drive.

 

  • Better traffic flow that connects St. Piran, Chateau Lake Louise, and Upper Lake Louise parking. This will ensure pedestrian safety.

 

  • Improvements to Fairview day-use area.

  • Updated signage, road painting, lights, and arrows to improve pedestrian crossings and sharing of the road.

 


Frequently Asked Questions

How often can we expect updates?

Once a contract is awarded, the contractor and Parks Canada will finalize a traffic construction plan. Construction impacts will be shared through multiple channels, including stakeholder and resident updates, Parks Canada web and social media channels, and included in visitor trip-planning messaging. The next update is expected in spring 2024.

Do construction plans have a dedicated bike lane included?

The upcoming construction on Lake Louise Drive will focus on repair and rehabilitation of the pavement, with improvements to wayfinding and pedestrian safety. A dedicated bike lane is not in the scope of this project.

The current roadway repairs and improvements of this project are within the existing roadway footprint. Expanding the roadway footprint to include a standard cycling lane would require pushing back the steep slope next to the roadway. This would significantly increase costs and require extensive impact analysis. As an alternative, Parks Canada will explore optimizing the existing scenic trail network between the community of Lake Louise and the lakeshore.

Will cyclists be allowed on Lake Louise Drive during construction?

There will be no change in road-use restrictions during construction on Lake Louise drive. Contractors are required to maintain and manage traffic including cyclist and pedestrians, assuming there are no other restrictions in place.

What alternatives are there for cyclists to access upper Lake Louise?

Cyclists can access Upper Lake Louise on the Tramline trail. Updating existing trails to improve wildlife connectivity and the experience for pedestrians and bikers is being assessed as part of this project.

Will there be multiple lanes, with one dedicated to bus / tour transit?

With the exception of key intersections, the existing roadway footprint and lane configuration of Lake Louise Drive will remain the same.

What will the traffic impacts be through the summer? How can we plan ahead? When will we know?

Construction will cause delays in the busy Lake Louise area but will have long-term benefits for both visitors and wildlife. Parks Canada asks visitors to plan ahead, take transit, or book shuttles before arriving at Lake Louise, budget extra time when visiting, and expect delays in spring and summer 2024. The construction on Lake Louise Drive is anticipated to begin as early as April 2024 and last through to the end of the summer season 2024. Final construction details including scheduling will be available tentatively as early as April 2024.

For more information check Alberta 511, bookmark this page, and follow Banff National Park on Facebook.

Did Parks Canada consider restricting personal vehicle use on Lake Louise Drive during construction to prioritize shuttle access and minimize disruptions?

Lake Louise Drive is a mostly two-lane, undivided roadway offering one lane of traffic for each direction. For this reason, it is not possible to designate a lane for shuttles. Additionally, it not feasible to close Lake Louise Drive to personal vehicles for a variety of reasons pertaining to logistics and safety. More than one million people access Lake Louise annually. Many require access via personal vehicle as employees or hotel guests and patrons. Each vehicle would need to be assessed, filtered, and safely redirected. There is no safe method to manage this volume of traffic without using Lake Louise Drive.

Have more questions of comments about this project?

Email llykassets-actifsllyk@pc.gc.ca

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