Staff Report #4
May 25, 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 has started for phase two of the Downtown Loop as part of the London Rapid Transit Project. Currently Ridout is closed between Fullerton and Dundas resulting in Routes 5 and 7 being detoured via Queens, Talbot and York. All other routes are maintaining regular routing along Queens Ave during the first phase of construction, noting the stop at Queens and Ridout is closed due to lane reductions between Talbot and Ridout. Starting mid-June, work is scheduled to commence at the Richmond and Queens Intersection resulting in a full closure of the intersection for approximately six weeks. During this time all westbound buses will be detoured via Dufferin. Northbound and southbound buses will be detoured via Talbot and Wellington. Stop level notification will be posted on the closed stops to direct passengers to the detour routing and temporary stop locations.
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.
Work is also progressing at the eastern limits of phase I. As of Monday May 16, work on Adelaide between York and Marshall has commenced resulting in a single lane of traffic in each direction. As a result the southbound stop at Adelaide and Dundas will be closed until this section of work is completed.
Initial construction work has begun on the Victoria Bridge rehabilitation. At this time, the work does not require Routes 4 and 15 to be detoured; however, one southbound stop at Ridout and Horton is currently closed. Once construction progresses, detours will be required for all routes travelling through the area. Due to limited detour options in the area, Routes 4, 15 and 104 will be detoured off Ridout between Grand Ave and Horton along Carfrae and Richmond for the duration of the project, which is currently scheduled to be completed in May 2023.
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.
Beginning June 12 until approximately September 23, 2022 Wavell will be closed between Dundas and Clarke Road for construction staging. As a result, Route 35 will be on detour utilizing Royal Crescent in both directions. Additionally, Route 7 will not be 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 will see 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 it 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 and for a number of the upcoming festivals/events will result in detours to Waterloo Street between York and Dufferin. These detours will unfortunately result in significant walking distances for anyone hoping to take transit to these events and as a result may limit transit as an option for some riders.
A communication plan specifically focused on service impacts related to summer events being held in the downtown is being prepared to ensure passengers are as informed as possible of the detours and where to catch the bus during these events with as much advance notice as possible. As more details are known on specific events updates will be provided to the Commission.
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 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