Calgary, AB,

5 Avenue S.W. to be converted to two-way street

After a successful trial of the 5 Avenue lane reversal downtown, The City is moving forward with phase two of the project – converting 5 Avenue S.W. between 5 Street S.W. and the west-end into a two-way street.

On May 19, 2015 The City of Calgary implemented a trial lane reversal system on 5 Avenue S.W. between 7 Street S.W. and the west-end of downtown.  This optimized the use of existing transportation infrastructure and aided outbound traffic flow from the downtown core during the afternoon peak period. 

“Since May, the Transportation Department has monitored the 5 Avenue S.W. lane reversal,” said Ravi Seera, City of Calgary Traffic Manager. “Over time the lane reversal has shown increased use, providing Calgarians with another option for travelling west out of downtown.”

Traffic counts conducted in late September show over 840 vehicles used the reversed lanes between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m., including almost 470 vehicles during the 4:20 p.m. to 5:20 p.m. peak hour. This one-hour traffic volume represents over 60 per cent of the capacity of the lane reversal.

To further optimize the use of 5 Avenue S.W., the Transportation Department is implementing the following changes to the operation of 5 Avenue S.W. on a trial basis beginning, Thursday, October 15:

  •  5 Avenue S.W. between 5 Street S.W. and the west-end of downtown will be converted to a two-way street at all times except during the morning peak period (6 to 9 a.m.) on weekdays.
  • Motorists will be required to park facing westbound, on the north side of 5 Avenue S.W. between 5 Street S.W. and 10 Street S.W. at all times.
  • Morning and afternoon peak period parking restrictions will apply. Please obey all posted parking signs.

“During the lane reversal trial we heard from citizens that a two block extension would make westbound travel on 5 Avenue more convenient,” Seera said. “Allowing two-way traffic operations for most of the day will reduce congestion and provide better traffic circulation in the area using the city’s existing infrastructure.”

The two-way conversion will be in place for approximately six months as a pilot, after which time its success will be evaluated and next steps will be considered.  During the pilot, temporary traffic barricades and other control devices will be used, similarly to the operation of the current lane reversal. 

For more information visit