Wednesday, December 2, 2015
6:30 to 9 pm (Brief Presentation at 7 pm)
Dempsey Community Centre, Room 01
1895 Russell Road, Ottawa
Open house presentation [ PDF – 938 KB ]
Welcome to the Public Open House for the St. Laurent Boulevard (Industrial to Smyth) Transit Improvements Project.
This project has three main components:
- Reconstructing and expanding the Innes / Industrial / St. Laurent intersection to accommodate additional turning lanes and new cycling facilities;
- Reconstructing and widening St. Laurent Boulevard (within the existing right-of-way) to include a bus-only lane and a raised cycle track in each direction. The existing travel lanes will be maintained; and
- Minor improvements to the parking lot entrance near Elmvale transit station.
The project will improve transit reliability and cycling safety in the study area, and improve traffic operations and safety at the Innes / Industrial / St. Laurent intersection.
At today’s Public Open House, the study team is providing information and seeking your feedback on the following topics:
- The overall study process
- The need for these improvements
- Current conditions in the study area
- The preliminary recommended plan
- Proposed implementation and construction staging
- Anticipated impacts and proposed mitigation measures
Representatives from the City of Ottawa and MMM Group (the City’s consultant) are available to discuss the project with you. Please ask questions and provide your opinions to us. We encourage you to complete a comment sheet before leaving.
Overall Plan [ PDF – 10.6 MB ]
This study is a Schedule C project under Ontario’s Municipal Class Environmental Assessment (MCEA) process, which is approved under the Environmental Assessment Act.
The first two phases of the MCEA process were completed as part of the City of Ottawa’s 2013 Transportation Master Plan (TMP) update. The current study will complete Phases 3 through 4.
Phase 1 – Problem or opportunity – TMP (2013)
- Identify the need to be met by the project
- Document existing conditions in study area
Phase 2 – Alternative planning solutions – TMP (2013)
- Develop potential planning solutions to meet the need
- Identify impacts and mitigation measures
- Develop evaluation criteria for the solutions
- Select a preferred solution
Phase 3 – Alternative design concepts – September 2014 to November 2015
- Develop potential designs for the preferred solution
- Identify impacts and mitigation measures
- Develop evaluation criteria for the designs
- Select a preferred design concept
Phase 4 –Recommended Plan and ESR – December 2015 to May 2016
- Seek Council approval of study and preferred design
- Document the study process and recommended plan in Environmental Study Report (ESR)
- Revise ESR following public input
- Provide Notice of Completion to review agencies, public and Ministry of Environment
- Opportunity for appeal (part II Order)
Phase 5 – Implementation – to be determined
- Pursue detail design and tender construction contracts
Why are the improvements needed?
St. Laurent Boulevard is subject to regular traffic congestion, especially at the Innes / Industrial and Smyth / Lancaster intersections.
2013 Transportation Master Plan (TMP)
Alternative planning solutions to address congestion and delay were considered for this corridor during the TMP development process.
- Alternative 1: Do Nothing – This alternative results in unacceptable levels of delay for drivers and transit users.
- Alternative 2: Transit Priority – This alternative includes priority signals and queue-jump or bus-only lanes. It is expected to meet travel demand to 2031.
Alternative 2 (Transit Priority) was selected to respond to the anticipated travel demand and reduce delay for all road users. The study corridor was therefore designated a Transit Priority Corridor in the TMP.
This segment of St. Laurent is also designated as an Arterial Mainstreet in the City’s Official Plan (OP). It is recognized as a multi-modal transportation corridor and is intended to evolve, over time, into a more pedestrian oriented and transit-friendly street with more compact development.
The Ottawa Cycling Plan 2013 designates St. Laurent Boulevard as a spine route providing access along a major corridor. Dedicated cycling facilities are preferred along spine routes.
Where possible, the City combines road, transit, cycling and pedestrian improvements in a single construction project. This approach minimizes costs for the City and disruption for residents.
In this case, a planned rehabilitation of St. Laurent Boulevard offered an opportunity to implement transit priority measures, intersection improvements, dedicated cycling facilities and sidewalk improvements all at once.
Study area and context
There is up to 4 m of unused City-owned right-of-way on both sides of the existing St. Laurent Blvd. This applies to the entire length of St. Laurent Boulevard from Innes Road to Russell Road.
St. Laurent Boulevard currently includes two full travel lanes in each direction. This applies to the entire length of St. Laurent Boulevard from Innes Road to Russell Road.
There are numerous commercial entrance bays on both sides of St. Laurent Boulevard. This applies to various entrances along St. Laurent Boulevard on both the east and west side mainly between Innes Road and Bourassa Street.
High levels of traffic delay have been identified at the Smyth / Lancaster intersection. This applies to all directions of traffic at the Smyth/Lancaster and St. Laurent Boulevard intersection.
Safety concerns and high levels of traffic delay have been identified at the Innes / Industrial intersection.
A high-voltage overhead hydro line runs along the east side of St. Laurent Boulevard. Several underground utilities are present within the right-of-way as well. The hydro pole line is along the east side of St Laurent between the curb and the sidewalk between Smyth and Innes. The areas where the underground utilities are affected is in various locations along St Laurent between Smyth and Innes.
Elmvale Station is a terminus and transfer point for 6 local bus routes that provide Transitway and neighbourhood access. The Elmvale Transit station is located next to the Elmvale Acres Mall on the south-west corner of Smyth and St Laurent.
How we developed the plan
St. Laurent Boulevard
Several design alternatives were considered for the recommended improvements:
Alternative 1: Transit lanes only
- Avoids relocation of hydro poles
- Does not provide a dedicated cycling facility
Alternative 2: Transit lanes with on-road bike lanes
- Provides a dedicated cycling facility
- Requires costly relocation of hydro poles
Alternative 3: Transit lanes with raised cycle tracks
- Provides a dedicated cycling facility
- Hydro poles are located between cycle track and roadway
Innes / Industrial / St. Laurent intersection
The number and length of turning lanes, shape of traffic islands and channels, and treatment of pedestrian and cycling facilities were chosen to balance the following considerations:
- Safety of pedestrian, cyclist, transit, truck and general traffic movements
- Physical space available within City-owned right-of- way
- Utility relocations
- AODA compliance
Additional project components
At the same time as the transit improvements, the City will replace the substandard sidewalk on the east side of St. Laurent Boulevard from Belfast Road to Tremblay Road. The new sidewalk (illustrated below) will be a minimum of 1.8 m wide.
The City may also resurface St. Laurent from the Innes / Industrial intersection southerly to the Elmvale Shopping Centre / Transit Station entrance as part of the overall construction project.
Proposed New Sidewalk [ PDF – 123 KB ]
Environmental impacts and mitigation
Throughout construction, two full travel lanes will be maintained during the day. Limited daytime closures of turn lanes may occur outside peak periods. Lane reductions will occur at night. A traffic management plan will be developed to minimize the impact of closures.
Access to commercial areas and key driveways in the study area will be maintained at all times during construction. The Contractor will work with adjacent property owners to minimize any disruptions to access.
Construction activities will result in elevated noise levels. As most construction will take place at night, a Noise By-law exemption will likely be required. The Contractor will be required to maintain equipment in good operating condition to prevent unnecessary noise and restrict idling of equipment to the minimum necessary to perform the work.
During construction, OC Transpo bus stops may be temporarily relocated and shelters temporarily removed. Overall transit service disruptions are likely to be minor.
Approximately 21 m2 of private property is required at the southeast corner of Innes Road and St. Laurent Boulevard, up to 3.5 m past the current property line. Some grading and temporary disturbance may impact adjacent properties. All disturbed property and landscaping will be reinstated after construction is complete.
Vegetation and landscaping within the right-of-way may require removal to accommodate construction. Consideration will be given to reinstating any removed trees and shrubs in-kind (1:1 ratio). Vegetation that does not require removal will be protected from construction activities.
Stockpiled materials, dust and construction waste have the potential to contaminate the surrounding environment if not managed properly. Construction waste will be removed off-site and managed by the Contractor in accordance with provincial standards. The Contractor will implement procedures to control emissions of dust and other debris.
- Present to Transportation Committee
- Prepare and file Environmental Study Report (ESR) for regulatory agency and public review (anticipated in February 2016)
- Complete detail design and secure required permits / approvals
We want to hear from you!
Tell us what you think about the Recommended Plan presented today. Please fill out a comment sheet and leave it in the box provided, or send an email to Luc Frechette, the City’s project manager.
- Join the study mailing list by emailing your request to Luc Frechette
- Review the ESR when it is filed
- Visit the study website
Freedom of information and protection of privacy
Comments and information are being collected to assist in the identification of a recommended plan. This material will be maintained on file for use during the study and may be included in study documentation. With the exception of personal information, all comments will become part of the public record.