The city’s Transportation and Transit committee is recommending the new Green Line LRT go underground from north of 16th Avenue North through the downtown into the Beltline.
It’s the most expensive option, but it has a lot of support, as developers and community groups came forward during Wednesday’s meeting to support the idea of running the line underground through the downtown, under the Bow River and then back up.
The cost is $1.95-billion, however, there is less disruption to the downtown as well as the Centre Street Bridge.
There was some concern from Beltline residents about having the train run on, or below, 10th Avenue, as many prefer that it would on underground on 12th Avenue.
Councillor Evan Woolley managed to get that option back on the table for study.
If approved by the rest of council, planners will go back and refine the design and cost estimates, and have a set alignment of the 40-kilometer route.
Chinatown BRZ director Terry Wong says the underground line is essential to the vibrancy of the area.
“The underground system will allow us to not only bring more people to Chinatown but bring people to Chinatown in a safe, secure and manageable sort of way 12 months throughout the year,” Wong told the committee.
A report is expected to come back to council at the end of the year.