Staff Report #4
August 31, 2022
To All Commissioners
Re: 2022 Road Construction/Events Update
The report be NOTED and FILED.
LTC administration continues to work closely with civic administration as well as the specific contractors on each major construction project to ensure regular communication regarding the status of the projects in an effort to mitigate the impact of construction on service and ridership by allowing buses to operate in work zones where it is deemed safe to do so. LTC administration attends weekly conference calls with civic administration specifically to discuss the impacts of ongoing and upcoming downtown construction projects.
Downtown Loop Phase II
Construction continues on phase two of the Downtown Loop as part of the London Rapid Transit Project. Ridout continues to be closed between Fullerton and Dundas resulting in detours for Routes 5 and 7.
Ridout between Dundas and York has been reopened, allowing eastbound buses to utilize Riverside, Ridout to York for the detour. This will significantly reduce the detour routing and have a positive impact on schedule adherence.
The work at the Richmond and Queens intersection was extended and at time of report writing is anticipated to be completed on August 26 with the intersection reopened to traffic on August 27. Northbound/southbound routes will return to regular routing along Richmond when the intersection is reopened. With the completion of the Richmond and Queens Intersection, work is now scheduled to commence on Queens between Richmond and Wellington and as a result, westbound buses continue to detour onto Dufferin between Wellington and Talbot. The Talbot/Queens Intersection is scheduled to be closed starting mid-October. Timing of this is dependent upon reopening the Ridout/Queens intersection.
East London Link Phase I
Construction began on the first phase of the East London Link for the London Rapid Transit project on March 21, 2022. Phase I includes King Street between Wellington and Lyle, which will be broken down into smaller sub-phases throughout the 2022 construction season. Work on the Wellington and King intersection commenced on April 19, 2022 resulting in all eastbound buses normally operating on King to be detoured. Due to construction on Ridout south of King, routes entering the downtown via Riverside/Dundas and Ridout are detoured via Wharncliffe, Springbank, Horton, Stanley and York. Temporary stops have been installed on York Street to try to minimize travel distance to a bus stop as much as possible. One lane of traffic northbound and southbound on Wellington is to be maintained through the project and as such northbound and southbound routes are able to maintain regular routing. However, as there is only one lane, stops are closed both northbound and southbound throughout the duration of the project to avoid transit vehicles stopping in the only travelled lane.
The full closure of Ridout for the Victoria Bridge replacement began on July 25 and is scheduled to last until spring 2023. During this time, Routes 4,6 and 104 (resuming service on September 4, 2022) have been detoured via Grand, Carfrae and Richmond.
Adelaide Street North Underpass
Construction began on the Adelaide Street Underpass on April 21, 2022. As Adelaide is a major north/south artery through the City, a temporary road will be constructed to allow vehicles to continue to travel along the corridor throughout the construction period. While major detours are not anticipated for Route 16, seven stops (three northbound and four southbound) will be closed through the duration of the project as the temporary road will only have a single lane in each direction. The construction is currently scheduled to continue through summer 2025.
Wavell Street- Dundas to Royal
Work commenced on June 12, 2022 and is expected to last until approximately September 23, 2022 on Wavell between Dundas and Royal. Route 7 is not able to service the Dundas/Wavell loop and as such will have extended layover times at Argyle Mall.
Summer Events in the Core
Summer 2022 has seen the return of many long-standing summer events to the core, which were cancelled over the past couple of years as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With the focus on Back to Business in the core area, the City of London is placing priority on having as many events in the centre of downtown as possible, which will result in some street closures and detours.
As mentioned above, there are also many major construction projects ongoing in the core this year as well. As a result, detour options for transit are limited.
Forest City Road Race
The Forest City Road Race is scheduled to take place on September 18, 2022 with the start and finish line on Dufferin at Clarence. As a result, Dufferin will be closed from Friday September 16 until approximately 2 pm on Sunday September 18. With the continued closure of Queens Ave for the Rapid Transit construction, westbound routes that have been detoured to Dufferin will utilize York and Horton during the race weekend.
As this will limit access in the core north of York, a communications plan will be created to assist passengers with travel during this time.
Orientation Week at Western
Western will be resuming Orientation Week activities on campus the week of September 5 to 10. To ensure student safety, internal campus roads will be closed off to vehicle traffic between 6 pm and 2 am each day. During this time, all routes serving Western will be detoured around the campus via Richmond, Windermere and Western Road. Alumni Circle will remain open to allow buses that turn around at Western to utilize the circle.
The underlying goals with respect to communications regarding detours are to provide passengers and Operators with as much information as far in advance as possible, noting that dates and impacts can change without notice. Accomplishing both of these goals requires a balanced approach. With the significant ongoing construction in the core and related changes to detours as construction areas change, stop level notifications have been used to provide passengers information with regards to which stops are closed and direct them to the closest stop location. Recently an audit of all closed and temporary stop locations was completed in the core to ensure accurate information was in place to help passengers with wayfinding. Regular audits will continue to be completed through the remainder of the construction season.
With respect to the overall service impacts related construction and detours, a communication strategy has been developed and implemented with respect to service interruptions in an effort to ensure passengers and bus Operators are aware of the detours with as much advance notice as possible. This includes stop level notifications of upcoming closures, website and real-time/Infoweb alerts, social media and internal information boards.
Katie Burns, Director of Planning
Concurred in by:
Kelly S. Paleczny, General Manager