The City of Calgary has unveiled construction on a new piece of public art that has been installed at a new intersection near Canada Olympic Park on Thursday.

The four Bowfort towers, placed on the south side of the Trans-Canada Highway between the west city limits and Sarcee Trail, feature large Rundle Rock stones, a type of rock only found in Alberta.

Sandra Iley, manager of Arts and Culture in Calgary, says the work is only half done on the installation.

“These are the sentinels that one can see driving into the city from the west as you come in on the south side of the highway just at the base of Canada Olympic Park.”

The stones in the pieces, by the artist De Geist, are positioned midway up the steel towers and are placed in such a way that they appear to be floating.

Officials say that the stones come from the personal collection of Louis Kamenka at the Kamenka Quarry near Canmore. They also align with Blackfoot cultural symbolism; four seasons, four directions, four elements and four human stages.

Iley says they have a number of interesting features too.

“When you look at them, you can actually see the water ripples from the lake that was here 227 million years ago. There are also fossils from the animals in the seabed at that time and so they're a really interesting connection back to the immemorial times of this land.”

The towers are just one part of the whole project, Iley said. Another section, on the north side of the highway, will be constructed using earth forms.

“The artist creating that is Patricia Leighton and those earth forms will service in their way as an introduction to the foothills of the Rocky Mountains that people will be driving into as they exit the city to the west.”

She says that art will be made out of the existing soil that has already been moved for the construction of the interchange.

Iley says that they expect all sorts of feedback on the pieces but personally believes they work well with the landscape.

“I think they'll become landmarks in much the same way that if you think about the Arctic landscape and the kind of landmarks that Inukshuks become.”

The whole installation was built with a budget of $500,000.