On-Site Magazine

Controversial skywalk in Jasper nearing completion

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August 6, 2013 by STAFF REPORT

Construction of the Glacier Skywalk in Jasper National Park is right on schedule: expected to wrap up this October and open in May 2014. 

But not everyone is counting down the days.

Now in its second construction season, the glass-floored path of the skywalk – 30 metres from the edge of a cliff and 280 metres above the valley – has been installed. Located near the Icefields Parkway, the project is being built and operated privately by Brewster Canada.

Several major media organizations are reporting the skywalk is creating a great deal controversy – particularly among environmental groups.

“It’s an atrocity for our national park and for our reputation,” Kim Wallace, a member of the Jasper Environmental Association, said in an interview with CTV. “To me, it feels like national parks are prostituting the land, they’re trying to make money and they’re doing it in a way that to me is unethical.”

However, Brewster Canada’s president says the walkway will offer an unparalleled view of the park while adding an educational feature. “Rather than people just driving down the parkway looking at the scenery and not learning anything, we wanted people to get out of their cars and engage in a fun and unique way,” said Michael Hannan.