Bridge For the Animals

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Bridge For the Animals

Photo by Lucy Izon

November 2008

The Trans-Canada Highway (TCH) is the world's longest national highway, running 4,860 miles (7,821 km) across Canada from Victoria, British Columbia, on the Pacific coast to St. John's, Newfoundland, on the Atlantic. The Trans-Canada Highway linked several provincial highways, many of which were 4-lane divided roads, but some portions of the route (particularly where it traversed wilderness or agricultural land) the roadways were a single lane in each direction.

In order to provide a lesser disruption to wildlife and avoid collisions between vehicles and large mammals in wilderness areas, Parks Canada has undertaken projects in areas such as Banff, Alberta, to "twin" (i.e., expand from two to four lanes) some portions of the TCH, install "ungulate-proof" fences along both sides of the roadway, and create overpasses/underpasses in designated areas for the safe passage of wildlife. (Photographs of some of these wildlife passes may be viewed on the Parks Canada web site.)

The image displayed above purports to show elk crossing one such wildlife overpass in Banff. However, readers familiar with the area have pointed out that the structure pictured is not a wildlife overpass, but rather a bridge for the Canadian Pacific railroad track.

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