May 7th, 2014

HWY 855 – Alignment Functional Planning study (Athabasca, AB)


Alberta Transportation had initiated a functional planning study in 2009 to address the requirements of the Highway 855:24 corridor (30km in length) between Highway 663 (Caslan) and Highway 55 (Atmore).  The functional plan evaluated alternative Highway 855 alignment options and recommended future improvements.

The existing Highway 855 corridor does not meet minimum highway design standards and is characterized by:

  • sharp horizontal curves and abrupt 90 degree bends;
  • insufficient curve radii;
  • limited stopping and passing sight distances;
  • a gravel surface that varies in width (8m-to-12m);
  • 5 ATV trails, 81 accesses and an at-grade CN Rail crossing; and
  • 16 at-grade intersections some of which are all-way STOP controlled.

Various options were evaluated leading to determine the Consultants “Preferred Alignment” which is characterized by:

  • A reduced overall length of 27 km, (reduced by 3.2 km);
  • A reduction in the number of intersections from 16 to 13 along with improvements;
  • A reduction in the number of access and ATV trails from 86 to 10 accesses;
  • New service roads  – Total length 7.5-to-9.0 km;
  • Minimum horizontal curve is 1000m for the preferred alignment; and
  • A new paved surface (3.5m wide lane with 1.0m wide shoulders).


Right of way requirements, infrastructure needs assessment, vertical and horizontal alignments, access management, transportation planning, geometric designs, traffic analysis, and conceptual costing.

Role & Responsibility

Prime Consultant


Alberta Transportation North Central Region