Canada’s Top Infrastructure Projects

By Bryan • canada, urban planning • 23 Jan 2009

Canada Line - VancouverCanada Line – Vancouver

  1. Romaine Hydroelectric Complex Project $6.5 Billion
    • Hydro Quebec’s monster generating project in North-eastern Quebec.  1550 MW with a completion date of 2020.
  2. Bruce A Nuclear Generating Station Restart $5.25 Billion
    • Refurbishing of two CANDU reactors 250km north of Toronto on Lake Huron and construction of two additional reactors to be completed by 2013.  It will increase nuclear powers share of Ontario’s power to 25%.
  3. Eastmain-1-A/Sarcelle/Rupert Project $5 Billion
    • Yet another Hydro-Quebec mega project!  918MW of hydro-electric goodness built on the Rupert River.
  4. Spadina Subway Extension $ 2.63 Billion
    • Toronto’s first extension of their subway network outside city limits into the York Region.
  5. Albert Clipper Project $2 Billion
    • Big ass Enbrdige crude oil pipeline to from Alberta to the United States.  Slated to be competed in 2010, it is expected to transport approximately 800,000 barrels a day.
  6. Canada Line $2 Billion
    • Probably the best thing about the 2010 Olympics.  A underground/at grade rail-transport system will connect downtown Vancouver with Richmond and the Vancouver International Airport.
  7. Port Mann/Highway 1 Project $1.6 Billion
    • The Canada line may be a great step forward in terms of sustainable transportation, but that is probably going to be erased by the lane expansion of the Port Mann bridge.  Nothing like four more open lanes to get one into their car!
  8. Keephills 3 Generating Plant $1.6 Billion
    • Tasty coal fired power!  In Alberta, of course.  Apparently clean, due to be online in 2011.
  9. Autoroute 30 $1.5 Billion
    • Quebec is home to 30% of the top projects in Canada.  Private-Public highway project in the Montreal area.
  10. Edmonton Ring Road $1.42 Billion
    • Roads make people happy!  27 bridge structures, 2 rail crossings, five fly-overs, and eight interchange.

Kingston, clocking in at a mere 152,000 souls managed to make the top 100 three times!  First at #37, the Wolfe Island Wind Project with a price tag of $450 million.  I’m watching this baby go up across from my basement suite. Second is the the renovation and expansion of Kingston General Hospital ($142 million) and at #85 Queen’s own Queen’s Center Phase One at $115 million – which apparently is now up to $250 million, but that could include phase 2….I am not entirely sure.

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7 Responses

  1. you know...

    Re: Queen’s Center
    The second price includes phase 2 – the original price tag for the project was $263 million (both phases) but due to budgeting and the fact that blasting through limestone is horrendously expensive it’s now almost $300… (or higher…who knows). However, we should all be using 80% of this fine facility by Sept 2009!…right…

    • That would easily put it in the top 50.

      That place better knock my socks off when it opens. Do you know how much of that price tag was allocated for the underground parking?

  2. you know...

    The $263 million is the whole project and that list only included phase one – so yes if the whole project was included it would move up the list a great deal! (It’s the largest (and most expensive) university construction of a single building to date – in Canada).

    The Queen’s Center does not focus on parking, but the building itself extends about a story below ground – so it needed to be blasted as well.

    The underground parking is largely in Tindall field (beside Policy Studies) and was budgeted at $35 million and is separate from the Queen’s Center budget.

    Knock your socks off indeed! – Phase one is all the athletic facilities and the new School of Kinesiology and Health Studies

  3. you know...

    So to perhaps answer your question…haha:

    No I’m not sure on the exact budget breakdown in terms of parking in the Queen’s Center itself, but it would be considerably smaller than Tindall field (as the underground size is smaller), so a small proportion of the overall budget.

  4. Thanks for the info. I’ve been watching Tindell go up (my office is right above the field) since I started at Queen’s. I can’t believe how long it has taken them to construct a simple stair entrance shelter. The crews have been picking at those simple steel/concrete covers for 4 months and they are still not completed yet.

    I obviously recognize the need for unions…but pace of construction for something that simple is rather ridiculous. A good skilled Chinese construction crew would have had that thing up in a week.

  5. Gord

    I read about the Spadina line expansion the other day. Apparently it will go all the way out to Vaughan (!). I figure the rough B.C. equivalent would be extending SkyTrain out to Langley. On the one hand, I am always happy to see mass transit being extended as an option for people and this extension would serve some major existing institutions (like York University), but I can’t shake the feeling that, like the RAV, this would be a bit of a subway to nowhere. I am also a bit leery of ‘rewarding’ suburban sprawl by extending mass transit into the exurbs at the expense of existing density – wouldn’t that money be better spent making sure that people who actually live in Toronto proper have better transit options than being stuck on a bus for 45 minutes if they are not fortunate enough to live near one of the two – count ’em two – subway lines? I always compare and contrast Toronto’s approach of two ever-expanding lines with the multi-line approach of Paris, London, New York, hell even Montreal.

    Canada Line: as alluded to above, I think this will end up under-utilized. I just don’t see the Cambie corridor as having the population density to justify a mass transit line – I have a sneaking suspicion the Canada Line will become a glorified airport shuttle service for those who are too cheap to shell out $25 for a cab. The money would have been better spent extending SkyTrain west into Vancouver, out to UBC, IMHO.

    Port Mann: on the one hand I am generally leery of highway/freeway expansion, but on the other hand, that bridge and the highway 1 are a total nightmare and a huge bottleneck. I know, I know, traffic always expands to fill available space, etc, but there is little other option for people in Surrey and the Fraser Valley to get to Vancouver, and it’s not like that area is not completely developed already. I also can’t shake the feeling that most of the opposition is driven by Vancouver NIMBY types who fear what the effect of improved road access will do to Vancouver property values.

    I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the South Fraser Perimeter Road, which is estimated to clock in at approximately $1 billion….

  6. Hey Gord,

    Yeah, Spadina has some controversy, especially regarding the terminal station which is apparently surrounded by box stores. Unfortuntately, I’m not terribly familiar with this extension, ditto for the Canada Line – although as a planner-in-training it is a requirement to like such things :-p. I know many of my colleagues are very familiar with both expansions.

    At the end of the day I think such expansions are beneficial, largely because many city policies are moving towards intensifications, especially in suburban downtowns (ie. Richmond) and the presence of quick transit options (as opposed to stop-go conventional bus routes) are important for realizing these intensifcation goals.

    I’m tempted to drop in a joke about Surry…

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