The $500M City of Saskatoon North Commuter Parkway and Traffic Bridge Reaches Financial Close

On October 20, 2015, the City of Saskatoon signed a project agreement with Graham Commuter Partners General Partnership, a consortium comprised of Graham Capital Partners LP and BBGI CanHoldco Inc., to design, build, finance and maintain the Saskatoon North Commuter Parkway and Traffic Bridge (NCPTB), with Graham Infrastructure LP providing construction and rehabilitation services and A S L Paving Ltd. as the operations and maintenance subcontractor.

The $500 million project is the City’s second Public-Private Partnership and the largest construction project in the City’s history.

The North Commuter Parkway portion of the project includes a six-lane bridge and 8.3 kilometers of new arterial roadways. The Traffic Bridge will accommodate all modes of transportation while retaining a similar architecture to the previous structure as well as the riverscape of the past century.

Construction is scheduled to conclude by the fall of 2018.

The City of Saskatoon’s legal team was led in-house by Cindy Yelland, Director of Planning & Development Law and supported by Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP with a team that included Judy Wilson, Marianne Smith, Kate McGilvray, Jason MacIntyre, Theresa Chan, Neelu Toor, Alyssa Shivji, and Stephanie Console. Danny Anderson and Paul Olfert of MacPherson Leslie & Tyerman LLP acted as Saskatchewan counsel on behalf of the City.

Graham Commuter Partners General Partnership was represented by McMillan LLP with a team that included Candy Saga, Don Waters, Julie Han, Ahsan Mirza, Mandy Versi, Tayleigh Armstrong, Shehen Mirakian and Rob Scavone. Advice on matters related to the law of Saskatchewan and Manitoba was provided by Stuart Wicijowski, Kelly Waddell and Peter Wilson of McDougall Gauley LLP and Doug Sigurdson of Aikins, MacAulay & Thorvaldson LLP, respectively. Graham Infrastructure LP was represented in-house by Tony Clark and Brock Carscallen. A S L Paving Ltd. was represented by Timothy Hodgson of Stevenson Hood Thornton Beaubier LLP.

Financing for the project was provided by way of a combination of short term bank debt, underwritten by Alberta Treasury Branches, a private placement, underwritten by National Bank Financial Inc. and Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada, and equity. DLA Piper (Canada) LLP acted as counsel to the Lenders, with a team that included Elizabeth Mayer, Andrew Burton and Eric Belli-Bivar.