Open Houses - April 20, 21 and 23, 2015

Monday, April 20, 2015, Orléans
Tuesday, April 21, 2015, Cumberland
Thursday, April 23, 2015, Clarence Creek

Open House Display Boards

General Questions

Why are we studying the widening of Highway 174, CR 17 and the Eastern LRT?
The 2013 Transportation Master Plan (TMP) has identified a shortfall in transportation capacity for residents of the City of Ottawa and the United Counties of Prescott-Russell, primarily to access jobs and activities in the central area of Ottawa. In addition to providing additional transit capacity to meet the objectives of the TMP, additional road capacity is also required.

Through the corridor the transportation model indicates that one additional lane of road capacity is needed in each direction. This could be either a new two-lane roadway, or a widening of the existing roadway. The model also indicates that the majority of these trips want to access Highway 174 at Trim Road and Highway 417 west of the split.

Road safety is another concern on the existing road. Adding the additional lanes will allow for many of the safety issues to be addressed. Dividing the highway to prevent vehicles from crossing over the centre line and finding ways to consolidate driveway accesses will improve safety.

Why was the 174/17 corridor selected over the others considered?
There is less travel demand across the City by a southern route than travel demand to the downtown area and areas close to Highway 417 via Highway 174 and Highway 417. Routes that connect south of Highway 174 along Trim Road will require additional capacity to manage the downstream traffic volumes. Development continues in the east end of the City of Ottawa and in counties outside the City, placing pressure on the transportation network to accommodate more trips.

West of Trim Road, the implementation of LRT from Blair Station east to Place d'Orléans (and eventually to Trim Road) will provide additional travel capacity and connection to a widened 174/17 will help to improve ridership.

What is the timeline for the LRT extension and the widening of Highway 174 and CR 17?
The Confederation Line East LRT Extension is a Stage 2 project planned for 2023, subject to funding availability. The widening of 174/17 is not currently identified in the City of Ottawa's Affordable Plan to 2031 and will be dependant on funding availability.

Will noise be an issue?
The LRT will have a continuously welded track, is electrically driven, and will be generally quiet. The change in road proximity and traffic volumes will affect noise levels. Impacts are being investigated in greater detail, along the full length of the corridor and mitigation measures will be provided where warranted.

Eastern Light Rail Transit

How were the station sizes, design and locations determined?
Stations are located based on a number of criteria including connection to north-south bus routes (at arterial road crossings of the corridor), serving existing and projected ridership, and a spacing that maximizes the number of people who can access the station within a 600 metre walk zone.

There will be an emphasis on connectivity, accessibility and personal safety by designing stations that provide good connections to local bus routes, sidewalks, pedestrian pathways, and bicycle facilities. Stations will be fully accessible to passengers with disabilities through the use of elevators, logical arrangement of station elements and clear, concise signage. Creating logical stations with clear sight lines assist all members of the community by creating safer places.

How will this system be paid for?
The capital cost to build the system will be part of the City's Stage 2 LRT implementation and the City will be seeking funding partners with upper levels of government. On-going operating costs, including increases or decreases in service levels to meet ridership demands, will be part of OC Transpo's on-going budgetary process.

Why not extend the LRT to Trim Road and beyond?
Implementation of the LRT is based on the City of Ottawa's Affordable Plan to 2031 as well as projected ridership demand. The City's TMP currently identifies LRT implementation terminating at Place D'Orleans before 2031 with the extension to Trim Road post 2031. Beyond Trim Road, there is insufficient ridership to extend the LRT any further. We are protecting for a bus rapid transit corridor east of Trim to Frank Kenny to connect Eastern communities with the LRT.

How will the transit system operate when the LRT opens?
LRT trains will be completely segregated from other traffic, allowing them to move on a regular and predictable timetable, making trips fast and reliable.

The bus network currently has a set of local, semi-express and express routes designed to take passengers downtown in the morning (and home in the evening) and serve the major node at Place d'Orléans during the midday and evening. The LRT will require a reorganization of the route network, including:

  • Bus routes will take peak period passengers to the nearest LRT station
  • Few buses will travel across the greenbelt and further west
  • Enhanced local service will meet increasing demand
  • Trains will stop at all stations allowing for passenger transfer
  • While bus routes will not be timed to the arrival or departure of trains these connections will be as direct as possible with climate-controlled areas

CRT buses from Clarence-Rockland will have the ability to connect to the easternmost LRT station, allowing passengers to transfer to the LRT to travel into downtown.

Where will there be Park and Ride or Kiss and Ride facilities?
Currently there are two Park and Ride locations at Trim Road and at Place d'Orleans. These will be maintained and expanded if possible. Kiss and Ride in some form will be considered at every station.

Confederation Line Eastern LRT

Blair Station

From Blair Station, the LRT will extend directly east and pass underneath Blair Road and the Blair interchange ramps, staying along the north side of the highway. Once under all of the ramps, the LRT comes back up to grade and runs at about the same elevation as Highway 174 (Hwy174) along the north side. A station adjacent to Gloucester High School will be protected for the future (post 2031). A continuous pathway on the north side of the LRT is proposed.

For the Hwy174 road widening to Blair Road, the design will match the lanes constructed as part of the Ontario Ministry of Transportation widening of Hwy 417 from Nicholas to Hwy174. From Blair Road easterly, Hwy174 will be three lanes in each direction with paved shoulders. The additional lane will be designed for a high occupancy vehicle lane in each direction. Where the existing median is narrower than current standards, it will be widened.

Montreal Road

The LRT continues along following the existing grade of the highway until Montreal Road. The LRT will rise slightly where Montreal Road crosses under the alignment and the highway. Ramps will be modified at the Montreal Road interchange to allow for the LRT to pass on an elevated structure across the northern half of the interchange. The station will be in the northwest quadrant with the stairs and elevators concentrated at the end of the platform connecting down to a lower level concourse which will tie into the west (or south) side of Montreal Road. The structures carrying OR 174 over Montreal Road will be replaced when Hwy174 is widened.

East of Montreal Road Station the land drops down into the Green's Creek valley. The LRT stays high and climbs up to span across the westbound lanes to transition into the median of the highway. The LRT will then drop down to grade as we move towards the Sir George-Étienne Cartier Parkway structure. The existing Parkway Bridge can be modified to accommodate the LRT and highway widening.

East through the Greenbelt and into Orleans there is sufficient space for both the median LRT and the highway widening within the existing right-of-way.

Jeanne D'Arc Station

The first station east of Montreal Road, and the Greenbelt, is at Jeanne D'Arc Boulevard, in the median of Hwy174. The track is widened out for the centre platform at the station. There would be a station house on either side of Jeanne D'Arc to allow direct access for passengers transferring to and from buses or from the sidewalks of each side of the road. The interchange has been modified to remove the free flow ramp in the northeast quadrant and direct traffic through the intersection to accommodate bus operations in the curb lane across the bridge. This bridge also requires widening to 6 lanes to allow for 4 lanes of general traffic and a curb lane that will permit buses serving the station to transfer passengers.

Orléans Boulevard Station

The next station is at Orléans Boulevard. There is no access to OR 174 from the roadway, however bus service on the bridge will serve the station houses on the east and west sides of the bridge. This station is centered underneath the bridge.

Place D'Orléans Station

The next station is at Place D'Orléans and the current Phase 2 terminus for the Confederation Line East LRT program under the affordable plan. This station ties into the large bus loop in front of Place D'Orléans immediately south of the highway and to the Park and Ride lot to the north. Currently these are connected by a pedestrian bridge. This station is deliberately placed west of Champlain Street in part because the road bridge can accommodate the LRT and the existing highway in the short term but the structure needs to be rebuilt when the 174 is widened. It also aligns the platform more directly with the centre of the park and ride and the bus loop.

For the Hwy174 widening, minor modification to the ramps is required in the eastbound direction. There is also some conflict with the Hydro transmission line through the Place d'Orléans interchange that needs to be addressed. The LRT and widened highway encroach into the 15 metre wide maintenance space required by Hydro One. The preferred solution is to move the hydro lines to the south to provide Hydro One with maintenance access.

Orléans Town Centre

The next Station is a midblock station opposite the Orléans Town Centre. It is positioned to provide convenient access to the pathway to the north from connecting to the residential area. There would be a pedestrian bridge that spans the full width of the highway tying into the planned development on the south side. This station performs relatively well based on the development occurring in the town centre and with the amount of residential development it's within a reasonable walk or bicycle ride from the north of the station.

Tenth Line Station

The next station planned under the City's Transportation Master Plan was to be at Tenth Line Road. Based on the land development pattern in the future as well as the average spacing of the station, moving the station 300m to the east was examined. This would place it opposite two active development sites. As there is no bus service on Tenth Line today or planned for in the mid to long term, the transit oriented development potential of the future land uses warrant shifting the station to the east.

Taylor Creek Business Park Station
The next station identified in the City's Transportation Master Plan is Taylor Creek Business Park. This Station has extremely low ridership and is not recommended. When combined with the shift of the Tenth Line Station 300 metres to the east, the station spacings are now too close between Tenth Line East, Taylor Creek, and Trim Road stations.

Trim Road Terminus

As the LRT approaches the planned terminus at Trim Road, there are double crossovers immediately in front of the Station to manage train operations. Trim Road and Hwy174 today is an at grade signalized intersection and grade separation is required. A roundabout at Taylor Creek Boulevard currently exists and a second roundabout to the north at Jeanne d'Arc Boulevard is proposed to facilitate u-turns. Ramps will be provided for all movements, but will be positioned to allow for good access to the LRT station and to permit transit-oriented development close to the station. The station will be placed under the Trim Road bridge with a pedestrian bridge connecting to the Park and Ride lot.

Currently the bus loop is at the south end of the Park and Ride lot. The bus Loop will be moved north closer to the LRT Station to shorten the walking distance.

Eastern LRT Hybrid Alignment with HOV Widening [ PDF 10.203 MB ]

Widening of Highway 174 / County Road 17

Will the new highway lanes be for all drivers or only vehicles with more than one person in them?
The environmental assessment will identify the impacts of the largest footprint. This will include the additional lane width and buffer width that is needed to protect for High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes for vehicles with more than one person. If the City decides to make the lanes available to all drivers, the protected right-of-way will be wide enough and will not need additional approvals.

Won't the arterial roads that connect to the highway become overloaded if the highway is widened?
Our modelling work indicates that the arterial roads can adequately handle the additional traffic moving to and from the widened highway, although the level of congestion is likely to increase as travel demand increases.
How is the widened highway being designed to make travel as safe as possible? Current design standards are being applied. With the LRT being placed in the median (from Montreal Road to the eastern terminus), the road traffic will be separated from the trains by concrete barriers and safety fences. Visibility, design speed, lighting and safety measures are being designed into the plans.

Was a southern ring road considered? A ring road has been investigated by both the MTO and the City over the years and modelling work indicates that it would be poorly used. A ring road would be very expensive and currently neither the City nor MTO are carrying it forward for development.

Was a three-lane highway with reversible lanes considered?
The City conducted a review and assessment of whether reversible lanes would be suitable in this context. Safety and cost considerations indicate that a reversible lane is not appropriate along Highway 174 and County Road 17. The costs of putting overhead signage that indicate the direction of traffic in the centre lane would be expensive. Furthermore, for safety reasons, we need to put a barrier between lanes of different directions. Using reversible lanes over long distances, with driveway accesses and at highway speeds is not a feasible option.

Is more development being allowed in the corridor?
Growth continues across the Region, however the City has placed a moratorium on lot severances and new access points to Highway 174. Existing lots that are not yet developed may be allowed a new access, but wherever feasible the City's preference is to consolidate these potential new entrances with existing entrances.

A study similar to the Greater Toronto Area's "Places to Grow" is being considered for Eastern Ontario, which would look at where development should occur. There is a lot of good agricultural land in this area, and if we build a road, there would be pressure to develop the surrounding areas and we could lose this agricultural land.

Will property by expropriated to widen the 174/17?
There are many places along the corridor where we have sufficient right-of-way. For those portions where property is required to expand the right-of-way, then we will have a discussion with those residents who will be impacted.

174/17 Widening

Trim to Meadow Lane
East of Trim Road, approaching Cardinal Creek Village, the alignment shifts to the south, away from the existing road with a 10 m multiuse pathway area along the river for a pedestrian boulevard. There is a new signalized intersection to access Cardinal Creek Village.

Trim to Meadow Lane [ PDF 4.986 MB ]

Quigley Hill to west of Cumberland Village

Further east, a new service road provides consolidated driveway access for a series of 18 properties along the north side. The service road intersection provides a turn around point between Cardinal Creek Village and Quigley Hill Road. Properties not served by the service road will have right in-right out driveways. At Quigley Hill Road there will be a signalized intersection and a new access to the launch and picnic area.

Quigley Hill to Cumberland [ PDF 5.142 MB ]

Cumberland Village

An urban cross-section with raised median, curbs and multi-use pathways is provided through Cumberland Village.

At the Cameron Street intersection a traffic signal is the technically preferred traffic control measure. A 3-lane roundabout was also examined for the Cameron intersection. Faubert Street and Peter Harkness Lane on the south side are to be closed at the 174. Driveways along the north side will have right in-right out access. A new signal at the extension of Barnett Drive is technically preferred over a 3-lane roundabout.

Cumberland Roundabouts and Intersections [ PDF 1.233 MB ]

Cumberland Village to Canaan Road

At the Cumberland Heritage Museum area there is a pedestrian signal for crossing Hwy174. On the north side, a multiuse pathway connects from the pedestrian signal to East Shore Road where a service road will connect East Shore Road and Morin Road to Kinsella Drive where a traffic signal is provided. There will be a traffic signal at Old Montreal Road. McTeer Road will be extended westerly to connect to the McSkimmings Outdoor Education Centre. Traffic along McTeer Road will use the signal at Canaan to make turns.

Cumberland East to Caanen [ PDF 2.038 MB ]

East of Canaan to East of Edwards

East of Canaan Road there will be a new service road to connect several farms and a traffic signal to cross between the farm buildings north of County Road 17 and the farm fields to the south. The next traffic signal is at Carmen Bergeron, which provides access to the Walmart store. Where County Road 17 (CR17) is close to the Ottawa River, retaining walls are provided as needed to avoid filling into the river. There is also a retaining wall between County Road 17 and existing service road west of Richelieu Street. An urban cross section with curbs and a multi-use pathway where space permits is incorporated from east of Laporte to east of Edwards Street. The existing traffic signals will be maintained at Chamberland and at Edwards. Past Edwards the urban cross-section changes back to a rural cross-section with a median barrier an roadside ditches.

Caanen to Edwards [ PDF 9.247 MB ]

East of Edwards to Landry

An unsignalized intersection with a median break will be provided at Pigeon Street and at the arena. Signals are proposed for the new intersection with the Caron extension. In areas of provincially-significant weland retaining walls will be used to minimize the property required and environmental impacts. New development west of Laurier East will be accessed by an intersection that will also provide a connection to Laurier so that the existing intersection of Laurier East and CR17 can be closed due to ongoing safety concerns. A roundabout is illustrated, subject to discussions with the developer. At Laundry Road a roundabout is the technically preferred design.

Edwards to Landry [ PDF 1.243 MB ]

Next Steps

Based on feedback received:

  • Confirm/refine Hwy 174-ELRT functional design west of Trim
  • Confirm/refine Hwy 174-17 functional design refinements east of Trim
  • Finalize Functional Designs
  • Finalize mitigation measures
  • West of Trim – June/July presentation to Ottawa Transportation Committee
  • East of Trim – Fall presentation to Committees and Councils
  • Public review of study documentation

For further information on this project, or to be added to our mailing list, contact:

East LRT and OR174/CR17 Widening
Angela Taylor, P. Eng.
Senior Project Engineer
City of Ottawa
613-580-2424, ext. 15210

OR174/CR17 Widening
Marc R. Clermont, P. Eng.
Director of Public Works
United Counties of Prescott and Russell
613-675-4661, ext. 3100

Funding for the OR 174/County Road 17 Widening EA Study is being provided by the Government of Ontario.