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Highway 2 is the most important provincial highway in the Canadianmarker province of Albertamarker. The stretch between Calgarymarker and Edmontonmarker is one of the most heavily used highways in Canada, and is designated the Queen Elizabeth II Highway or the ‘QE2 Highway’.

The speed limit along most parts of the highway between Calgary and Edmonton is 110 km/h (70 mph) and in urban parts such as Calgary or Edmonton it is 100 km/h. During the winter time, accidents are common as the weather changes rapidly, and drivers underestimate the conditions. The worst area for accidents is the corridor north of Airdriemarker and south of Red Deermarker. Road closures are common. A sudden ice storm can create numerous accidents and pile-ups.

A review of historical Alberta Official Road Maps shows that Highway 2 was numbered Highway 1 prior to 1941 (while Highway 1 as we know it today was numbered Highway 2 prior to 1941).

Route

As its main north-south corridor, Highway 2 enters Alberta south of Cardstonmarker, at the Carwaymarker border crossing with Montanamarker (where it continues as U.S. Highway 89). It travels northward through Fort Macleodmarker to Calgarymarker, Red Deermarker, and Edmontonmarker. North of Edmonton the highway continues to Athabasca, after which the highway continues northwesterly along the south shore of Lesser Slave Lakemarker into High Prairiemarker, north to Peace Rivermarker, west to Fairviewmarker and finally south to Grande Prairiemarker.

As the main north-south access in Alberta, Highway 2 is the preferred path of the CANAMEX Corridor.Between Fort Macleod and Edmonton, Highway 2 maintains no fewer than four lanes of traffic and is largely a controlled-access freeway between Okotoksmarker and Edmonton, with improvements underway to eliminate at-grade crossings. It functions as a continuation of Interstate 15 into Canada when combined with Highway 4 and a short section of Highway 3.

Image:Alberta Highway 2 - exit 222.jpg|Exit 222 in Foothills No.marker 31markerImage:Deerfoot Trail x Peigan Trail.JPG|Deerfoot Trail at the interchange with Peigan Trail in CalgarymarkerImage:Alberta Crossfield single 2A foreground divided hwy 2 distance 005.jpg|At Crossfieldmarker single 2A foreground with the divided Hwy 2 in the distance.Image:Peaceriver.jpg|Hwy 2 near Peace Rivermarker

North of Okotoks, the three northbound lanes of the highway split into Macleod Trail (Highway 2A) and Deerfoot Trail, which keeps the Highway 2 designation through Calgary. It passes immediately west of the Calgary International Airportmarker before continuing north to the city of Airdriemarker, which is bisected by Highway 2, while a number of other smaller communities such as Crossfieldmarker are bypassed. The newer Highway 2 is built east of the communities and the ‘old’ route has become Highway 2A.

Red Deer is also primarily bypassed. Gasoline Alley, located at the south end of the city, is a popular stop for travellers headed for Calgary or Edmonton, with several fuel stations and food establishments. Continuing north, the highway again bypasses the smaller communities, this time on the west. Leducmarker, south of Edmonton, is bisected like Airdrie; however, this has been a result of westward growth of the community. The highway also passes immediately east of Edmonton International Airportmarker, about 15 km south of Edmonton.

When the highway enters Edmonton, it becomes Calgary Trail (southbound) and Gateway Boulevard (northbound), then Whitemud Drivemarker to the southwest part of the city. It then shares roadbeds with Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) and Yellowhead Trail (Highway 16) before heading north again along St. Albert Trail as it exits Edmonton and passes northwest through St. Albertmarker. (Future extension of Ray Gibbon Drivemarker in the northwest Edmonton region will bypass St. Albert from Anthony Henday Drive to Highway 2 north.)

After leaving St. Albert, the highway is twinned until it reaches north of Morinvillemarker and after that it is a 2-lane road for almost the rest of the stretch. Highway 2 continues north until it reaches a T-junction with Highway 18. From there, the route turns east towards Clydemarker and then follows a northeasterly direction to Athabascamarker before turning northwest towards Slave Lakemarker. The road continues west, following along the scenic southern shores of Lesser Slave Lake until it reaches High Prairiemarker. West of High Prairie, the highway then turns north to McLennanmarker and west until it reaches a junction with Highway 49 (locally known as 'Donnellymarker Corner'). The stretch of Highway 2 between Athabasca and Highway 49 is part of the Northern Woods and Water Route.

The highway continues north to Peace Rivermarker, the road's most northerly point in the province. It exits west out of Peace River then turns south through Grimshawmarker (the junction of the Mackenzie Highway) and Fairviewmarker, then over the Dunvegan Bridge, where it crosses the Peace River and ultimately terminating at an interchange at Highway 43 just north of Grande Prairiemarker. Prior to highway renumbering in northwestern Alberta, Highway 2 followed Highway 43's current alignment into British Columbiamarker, where it became Highway 2 to Dawson Creekmarker.

Queen Elizabeth II Highway

On May 23, 2005, the section between Calgary and Edmonton was renamed the Queen Elizabeth II Highway in honour of Her Majesty's visit to Alberta as part of the province's centennial celebrations; the first road sign was personally unveiled by the Queen. It is the first highway in Canada to be named for the current Queen (Ontariomarker’s Queen Elizabeth Way is named for Queen Elizabeth, the late Queen Mother).

Exit list

The province of Alberta began numbering exits on Hwy 2 in 2004.

Southern Alberta

Location # Destinations Notes Coordinates
Cardston Countymarker USmarker border in Carwaymarker North extension of U.S. Route 89
Hwy 501 south of Cardstonmarker
Cardston Countymarker, Cardstonmarker
Cardston Countymarker Hwy 505 branches west to Glenwoodmarker
Hwy 505 branches east to Spring Couleemarker
Hwy 509 branches east, north of Stand Offmarker
- Crosses the Waterton River
Hwy 511 branches east
Fort Macleodmarker South end of Highway 3 overlap, CANAMEX corridor continues on Highway 3
Hwy 811 branches north
89 North end of Hwy 3 overlap, southern end of the Alberta Highway 2 portion of the CANAMEX corridor


Calgary Region



Location # Destinations Notes Coordinates
High Rivermarker, Foothills No.marker 31marker 194 Signed as exits 194A (east) and 194B (west)
Foothills No.marker 31marker 209
222
225 Northbound exit and southbound entrance
227 Dunbow Road—De Wintonmarker
Calgarymarker 232 Cranston Avenue, Seton Boulevard
234
236 McKenzie Towne Boulevard, McKenzie Lake Boulevard
238 130 Avenue Southeast
240 Barlow Trail north
241 24th Street East, Douglasdale Boulevard
243 Anderson Road west, Bow Bottom Trail south
245 Southland Drive Southbound exit is part of exit 247
247 11th Street East—Shopping Centre
248 Signed as exits 248A (east) and 248B (west) southbound; northbound exit to Glenmore Trail west is via exit 247
N/A Foothills Industrial Park/ Calf Robe Bridge
251 Peigan Trail east, Barlow Trail south
254 17th Avenue SE, Blackfoot Trail South
256 Memorial Drive
N/A 8th Avenue N.E- (Renfrew)
258
260 32nd Avenue North
261 McKnight Boulevard—Calgary International Airportmarker Signed as exits 261A (east) and 261B (west)
263 64 Avenue North
265 Beddington Trail west Northbound exit and Southbound entrance
266 Airport Trail—Calgary International Airportmarker
268 Country Hills Boulevard—Delacour, Calgary International Airportmarker
271 Opened to traffic on November 2, 2009
Rocky View Countymarker 275 Eastbound to Kathyrn provides access to CrossIron Mills Shopping Centremarker
282 Big Springs Road—Airdriemarker
Airdriemarker 284 East Airdrie Industrial Area Northbound exit only
285
Rocky View Countymarker 295
305 Crossfieldmarker, Carstairsmarker, Acmemarker


Central Alberta

Location # Destinations Notes Coordinates
Mountain View Countymarker 315
326
340 , Sundremarker Signed as exits 340A (east) and 340B (west)
Red Deer Countymarker, Bowdenmarker 353 Southbound exit only
357
Red Deer Countymarker, Innisfailmarker 368 / / Signed as exits 368A (east) and 368B (north/west) northbound
Red Deer Countymarker 384
391 McKenzie Road—Gasoline Alley
Gasoline Alley, Willow Street—Petrolia Industrial Park Northbound exit only
Red Deer Countymarker, Red Deermarker 394 /
397 C&E Trail west, 32nd Street east—Red Deermarker
401
405 Signed as exits405A (east) and 405B (west)
Lacombe Countymarker 412
Lacombe Countymarker, Lacombemarker 422 Signed as exits 422A (east) and 422B (west)
Lacombe Countymarker 431
437
439
Ponoka Countymarker 446 Matejka Road
447 Gee Road Southbound exit and northbound entrance
450 Signed as exits 450A (east) and 450B (west)
462 Menaik Road
469
Wetaskiwin Countymarker 482 Signed as exits 482A (east) and 482B (west)
488 Correction Line Road
497


Edmonton Region

Location # Destinations Notes Coordinates
Leduc Countymarker 508 Kavanaghmarker, Glen Park
Leducmarker 516
517 , Leduc city centremarker
519 Leduc Business Sector
521 Leduc North Sector Northbound exit only
522 10th Avenue—Edmonton International Airportmarker, Nisku Business Park
Leduc Countymarker 525 , Niskumarker Business Park, Beaumontmarker
Edmontonmarker Ellerslie Road Highway 2 called Calgary Trail (southbound) and Gateway Boulevard (northbound) through southern Edmonton
, Edmonton ring road
Highway 2 called Whitemud Drive on this section
111 St NW
122 St NW / 119 St NW
Terwillegar Drive
53 Ave NW
Fox Drive (east)
na North Saskatchewan River Bridge over river
149 St NW
159 St NW
170 St NW
178 St NW
Highway 2 becomes a hidden concurrency with Highway 216 (Anthony Henday Drive) at this point
87 Ave NW West Edmonton Mallmarker
(Stony Plain Road)
Highway 2 becomes a hidden concurrency with Highway 16 (Yellowhead Trail) at this point
184 St NW
170 St NW
156 St NW
149 St NW
142 St NW
Highway 2 called St Albert Trail from here; end of concurrency
137 Ave NW Highway 2 called Mark Messier Trail from here to Edmonton city limit
St. Albertmarker Hebert Rd
Sir Winston Churchill Ave
na Sturgeon River Bridge over river
Boudreau Road
Sturgeon Countymarker
Cardiff Road, south Morinvillemarker access
Westlock Countymarker Highway 2 turns east
Highway 2 turns north


Northern Alberta

Location # Destinations Notes Coordinates
Athabasca Countymarker - Sylvan Glen
Athabascamarker , Highway 2 turns west
Athabasca Countymarker Highway 2 turns north and then west
Lesser Slave River MDmarker
na Athabasca River bridge over river
Slave Lakemarker Highway 2 continues west along the south shore of Lesser Slave Lakemarker
Big Lakes MDmarker
na Swan River crosses bridge, access to Kinusomarker
Highway 749 in High Prairiemarker
in Triangle Highway 2 turns north
Smoky River MDmarker , Highway 49
passes through McLennanmarker Highway 2 turns west
passes through Donnellymarker
Highway 2 turns north
Northern Sunrise Countymarker Highway 683
Highway 688 north to St. Isidoremarker Highway 2 turns north-west
Highway 744 south in Peace Rivermarker Highway 2 turns west, bridge crosses over Peace River
Peace MDmarker Highway 743 north to Deadwood
Highway 2A in Roma Junction, south to Grimshawmarker
Highway 2 turns south
Highway 2A merges from east in Grimshawmarker, Highway 685 west to Hines Creekmarker
Highway 684 south-east to Peace River Highway 2 turns west
passes through Berwynmarker
Highway 737 north in Brownvale
Fairview MD Highway 735 north to Whitelaw
passes through Fairviewmarker, Highway 732 north to Hines Creekmarker, Highway 64A west to Highway 64 Highway 2 turns south
Spirit River MDmarker na crosses Peace River in Dunvegan bridge over river
Highway 49 in Rycroftmarker
Highway 677 east to Kakut Lake
Highway 677 west to Wokingmarker
Grande Prairie Countymarker , to Teepee Creek
passes through Sexsmithmarker
Highway 670 east to Bezansen enters the city of Grande Prairiemarker
end of Highway 2 at 100 St and 116 Ave in Grande Prairie


References

  1. Government of Alberta—CANAMEX Trade corridor



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