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Rideau Street and William Street renewal

Project Status: 
Underway

Project overview

Stay informed! Sign up for the Rideau-William Street renewal e-newsletter.

Project limits and scope

The City of Ottawa is undertaking the detailed design and construction of a renewed Rideau Street, from Sussex Drive to Dalhousie Street.

The project involves the reconstruction of the streetscape elements and transportation components within the Rideau Street right of way.

This project also includes the renewal of a portion of William Street, between George Street and Rideau Street, which is a pedestrian street.

Off-site work includes repairs/modifications to existing street furnishings in previous phases of construction on Rideau Street and Ogilvy Square.

Public realm and streetscaping design

Rideau Street is an important public space within downtown Ottawa. The design for renewed corridor will:

  • Renew the street surface infrastructure
  • Increase pedestrian space to serve the needs of the LRT Confederation Line Rideau Station
  • Create a memorable experience for visitors
  • Add street greening
  • Be flexible and maintainable
  • Pursue a balance of functionality and aesthetics
  • Create an inviting and accessible place for everyone
  • Create a bike friendly infrastructure

The streetscaping strategy for Rideau Street and William Street is reflective of the historic nature of the corridor, but will also incorporate contemporary elements to ensure a timeless design.

The design includes an integrated family of streetscaping elements that are in keeping with the renewed portion of Rideau Street east of Dalhousie. These elements include benches, waste receptacles, pedestrian lighting, bicycle parking, bollards, street trees, special effects (FX) poles and pavers.

Proposed street furnishings [ PDF - 992 KB ]

Landscape roll plan [ PDF -  3 MB ]

LED Street lighting

The proposed LED street and pedestrian lighting for Rideau Street will be functional, efficient, able to reduce light spillage, harmonious with the Rideau-William Street Design Context, and cost-effective to operate.

The selected pedestrian streetlight for Rideau Street provides a distinct element and was used on the previous phases of Rideau Street Renewal.

Bicycle parking

Rack style bicycle parking is proposed to be used along Rideau Street. This is a proven design successfully used within the City of Ottawa.

Benches and waste receptacles

There will be benches and waste receptacles located throughout the corridor at key locations to provide seating opportunities, and to maintain the cleanliness of the corridor. The recommended benches and waste receptacles are shown here. Anti-graffiti coating will be applied to benches and waste receptacles.

Rideau Street proposed design [ PDF - 2.65 MB ] 

William Street proposed design [ PDF - 418 KB ] 

William Street vision [ PDF - 2.80 MB ] 

Project timeline

  • Construction on Rideau Street from Dalhousie Street to Sussex Drive commenced in April 2020 and the majority of the work is expected to be completed by the end of 2020. Rideau Street will reopen to traffic, transit and cyclists by the end of 2020.
  • Construction on William Street will commence in September 2020 and the majority of the work expected to be completed in December 2020.
  • Surface course asphalt and minor landscaping work will be performed in spring 2021.

Managing detour route impacts

The City’s toolbox to manage traffic on streets during construction includes:

  • General traffic monitoring
  • Regulatory signs
  • Electronic speed survey signs
  • Temporary physical modifications

The City recognizes that during the anticipated road closure of Rideau Street, the temporary detours for buses may impact commutes. The City recognizes challenges during construction and is committed to working with the community to minimize impacts and provide regular updates.

During the proposed OC Transpo bus detour, the City will:

  • Provide appropriate notifications and signage to confirm the bus and general traffic detour routes
  • Detour buses to Mackenzie King Bridge
  • Amended, as required, existing on-street parking permissions and regulations that conflict with bus turning maneuvers at intersections and bus stops will be amended as needed

Residents can reach OC Transpo at 613-741-4390.

The City will continually review all measures put in place during construction to ensure that the detour is working effectively.

Detour route map [ PDF - 496 KB ] 

Detour routes to be confirmed by OC Transpo, City of Ottawa Traffic Management staff, and the contractor prior to construction start.

Accessibility during construction [ PDF - 684 KB ]

  • The contractor undertaking the construction shall prepare a Construction Site Pedestrian Control Plan which will ensure the provision of a safe and accessible path of travel for all pedestrians through and/or around the construction site. The City will monitor accessibility regularly throughout construction.
  • Pedestrian travel routes along Rideau Street and William Street during construction will be fully accessible and winter maintained.
  • A 1.8 metre minimum pedestrian clearway width will be maintained.

Managing construction disruption [ PDF - 432 KB ] 

The construction project activities will have the potential to impact businesses and residents along the corridor and in the surrounding community. The project will:

  • Minimize the time and extent of the construction project's potential negative effects on adjacent businesses, landowners, and the surrounding community.
  • Place a priority on the need to retain transportation accessibility to the Transit station entrances, businesses and other street fronting land uses, including pedestrian accessibility to building fronts and loading opportunities on side streets.
  • Consider a range of environmental mitigation tools such as erosion and sediment control plans, contaminated materials management plans, noise and vibration monitoring, and geotechnical investigations.
  • Construction hours of work are typically 7:00 am to 6:00 pm weekdays, however the construction plans for Rideau-William Street are not yet confirmed. Provisions for weekend and evening work may be contemplated.

Work outside of project limits [ PDF - 724 KB ] 

The Rideau Street and William Street project will be impacted with several small-scale projects being undertaken in the vicinity. Some of these are as follows:

  • Downtown Rideau BIA special effects (FX) pole modifications
  • Bike ring repairs / replacement on Rideau Street
  • Bench repairs / replacement on Rideau Street
  • Curb replacement at Besserer-Ogilvie Square
  • Bollard repairs / replacement on Rideau Street

Working together through construction [ PDF - 347 KB ]

The City is committed to working collaboratively and continuously with affected parties during the construction period. The City will:

  • Notify residents of ongoing and upcoming work via an e-newsletter
  • Keep lines of communication open between the City, its contractor, area institutions, businesses and community associations
  • Make best efforts to schedule construction activities that work around special events and promotions
  • Actively involve adjacent institutions, business associations, landowners, and residents in finding solutions to manage the project's construction period disruption

Contact information

For further information about this project and/or to submit comments, please contact:

City project manager:
Vipin Bansal , MBA, P.Eng.
Senior Engineer
City of Ottawa
Tel: 613-580-2424, ext. 21276

Consultant project manager:
Mike Keating, P.Eng.
Senior Project Manager
Parsons
Tel: 613-691-1549

Thank you for your participation!

Current traffic impacts

On Sunday, April 26, Rideau Street from Sussex to Dalhousie will close to transit, traffic and cyclists to renew streetscape elements and upgrade transportation components within the Rideau Street right of way.

Pedestrian access to businesses will be maintained at all times.

Transit

During the closure, most OC Transpo bus routes that serve Rideau Street will be detoured to Mackenzie King Bridge.

Routes 6 and 7 will be detoured via Daly Avenue to maintain service to Elgin Street at Confederation Square. Night service on Routes N39, N45, N57, N61, N75 and N97 will be available at bus stops on Rideau Street at Dalhousie Street. N57, N61 and N75 are also available on Mackenzie King Bridge.

O-Train Line 1 and Rideau Station will remain open.

Please visit OCTranspo.com for more information and use the Travel Planner.

Work in 2020

In addition to the work along Rideau Street, work on the pedestrian portion of William Street, between George Street and Rideau Street, is expected to start in early fall 2020.

The full scope of the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2020.

Construction notice (April 2020)

COVID-19 is an unprecedented situation and the City of Ottawa is committed to protecting our employees and our community. The City of Ottawa has reviewed the essential workplaces information provided by the Province; construction on critical infrastructure projects - including roads, bridges, sewer, water, transit and transportation - falls within the exemption. As such, at this time, the City is not suspending work on these types of projects.

The City is working closely with the industry and complying with restrictions and recommendations provided by municipal, provincial and federal health officials, as well as the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development.

In April 2020, the City of Ottawa will begin construction in your neighborhood. This work is being done to improve infrastructure and will involve significant improvements to the public realm and a full renewal of the streetscape on Rideau Street between Sussex Drive and Dalhousie Street, and William Street between Rideau and George streets.

Who: The City of Ottawa has retained the Contractor, R W Tomlinson Limited to complete the work.

Why: The City of Ottawa will be proceeding with construction to improve streetscape elements and upgrade transportation components with the Rideau Street right of way.

What: Work will involve:

  • Renewal of streetscape infrastructure
  • Increase pedestrian space to serve the needs of the LRT Confederation Line Rideau Station
  • Create a memorable experience for visitors
  • Add street greening
  • Be flexible and maintainable
  • Pursue a balance of functionality and aesthetics
  • Create an inviting and accessible place for everyone
  • Create a bike friendly infrastructure

When: Work is expected to begin on Sunday, April 26, 2020. Completion is anticipated by the end of 2020.

Where: This project will take place on the following streets:

  • Rideau Street (Sussex Drive to Dalhousie Street)
  • William Street (Rideau Street to George Street)

Accessibility

Accessibility is an important consideration for the City of Ottawa. The City makes every effort to provide access through and around construction sites. If you require special accommodations, please contact the undersigned. Accessible formats and communication supports are available, upon request.

Traffic management

Rideau Street from Sussex to Dalhousie will close to transit, traffic and cyclists. Pedestrian access to businesses will be maintained at all times

During the closure, most OC Transpo bus routes that serve Rideau Street will be detoured to Mackenzie King Bridge. Routes 6 and 7 will be detoured via Daly Avenue to maintain service to Elgin Street at Confederation Square. Night service on Routes N39, N45, N57, N61, N75 and N97 will be available at bus stops on Rideau Street at Dalhousie Street. N57, N61 and N75 are also available on Mackenzie King Bridge.

O-Train Line 1 and Rideau Station will remain open. 

Construction disruptions

The Contractor will take every precaution to minimize interruptions to the everyday life of your family and/or operation of your business, but, as you can appreciate, there may be some inconvenience during the course of the work, such as noise, dust and vibration. We would like to thank you for your patience and co-operation.

The contractor is fully responsible for any damage to private property as a result of their construction activities. If you think that damage has occurred to your property as a result of construction, please contact the General Contractor directly. The contractor is required by the City to carry liability insurance before any work may proceed.

Noise

In support of the community and local economy, until further notice, all retail establishments are exempt from the regulations of the City of Ottawa’s Noise By-law pertaining to deliveries. This means that deliveries can take place at any time of day to ensure store shelves are stocked with essential goods.

By Order of the Province of Ontario, all permitted construction will be allowed to take place between the hours of 6 am and 10 pm, seven days a week until October 7, 2020. 

Contact information

For any emergency outside normal working hours, please call the City at 3-1-1.

For general project information, please contact the City’s Project Manager.

For construction related questions or concerns, please contact the Contractor Representative.

City’s Project Manager
Vipin Bansal
Senior Project Manager
City of Ottawa
Phone: 613-580-2424 ext. 21276

City Communications Liaison
Megan Dussault
Senior Communications Officer
City of Ottawa
Phone: 613-580-2424 ext. 25183

Contract Administrator
Marc Proulx, C.E.T
Parsons Canada
Phone: 613-292-4234

Contractor’s Representative
Luc De Champlain
Project Manager
R W Tomlinson Limited
Phone: 613-913-9103

Rideau Street and William Street Renewal - FAQ

Q: What is the Rideau Street and William Street Renewal project?

A: This is the third and final phase of the Rideau Street and William Street Renewal project. Initiated in 2012, the first two phases focused on improvements between the Cummings Bridge in the east and Dalhousie Street in the west. The City of Ottawa is now preparing to complete the remaining section between Sussex Drive and Dalhousie Street. The project involves the renewal of the streetscape elements and an upgrade of the transportation components within the Rideau Street right of way.

This project also includes an overall renewal of the pedestrian portion of William Street, between George Street and Rideau Street.

Q: What is the end result going to look like?

A: Rideau Street is an important gateway into downtown Ottawa, and William Street provides a pedestrian-focused connection to the ByWard Market. The designs for both Rideau Street and William Street will:

  • Renew the street surface infrastructure
  • Improve cycling infrastructure
  • Increase pedestrian space to serve the needs of the LRT Confederation Line Rideau Station
  • Create a memorable experience for visitors
  • Add street greening
  • Be flexible and maintainable
  • Pursue a balance of functionality and aesthetics
  • Create an inviting and accessible place for everyone

The new design for Rideau Street and William Street is reflective of the historic nature of the area and will incorporate contemporary elements to ensure a timeless design.

More information, including the proposed design, can be found on ottawa.ca.

Q: What is the construction schedule?

A: Work on Rideau Street is anticipated to start in April 2020 with completion at the end of 2020. The work will require a full road closure of Rideau Street to traffic, transit and cyclists during this time.

Work on William Street is expected to start in early fall 2020 and be completed by the end of 2020.

Pedestrian and business access will be maintained at all times during construction.

Q: What is the project budget?

A: The approved project budget is $13.5 million.

Q: I am a frequent visitor to Rideau Street and the ByWard Market. How can I access the places I love during construction?

A: Whether you are driving, taking the bus, cycling or walking, Rideau Street and the ByWard Market are still fully accessible and businesses remain open during construction.

Pedestrian access across Rideau Street are being maintained wherever feasible. A pedestrian corridor will similarly be maintained between George Street and Rideau Street. However, as work progresses, you may notice changes in pedestrian crossings. Please ensure to follow the pedestrian signage within the construction zone.

Q: Where can I park my car around the Rideau Street closure?

A: There is still plenty of street parking on side streets adjacent to the construction zone. Be sure to check signage before you park. The City also operates two indoor parking garages on Clarence Street.

Q: Where can I park my bike around the Rideau Street closure?

A: You can park your bike on the side streets adjacent to Rideau Street. Ample bike parking is also available at Ogilvy Square. If you are accessing Rideau Street on your bike, please dismount and walk it along the signed pedestrian route.

Q: What route is planned for the bus detour?

A: During the closure, most OC Transpo bus routes that normally serve Rideau Street will be detoured to serve Mackenzie King Bridge.

Routes 6 and 7 will be detoured via Daly Avenue to maintain service to Elgin Street at Confederation Square. Night service on Routes N39, N45, N57, N61, N75 and N97 will be available at bus stops on Rideau Street at Dalhousie Street. N57, N61 and N75 are also available on Mackenzie King Bridge.

O-Train Line 1 and Rideau Station will remain open. Use the Travel Planner on octranspo.com.

Q: Was the public consulted on this project?

A: The City endeavours to work with local residents, businesses, stakeholders and community groups throughout the construction project.

Public consultations took place in 2019, and were supplemented with meetings with various stakeholders, including the Business Improvement Areas (BIAs), property owners and business owners to share updates and discuss the project design. The City also launched a project webpage that outlines the vision and design options for Rideau Street and William Street.

These meetings and online engagement opportunities generated numerous comments, many of which helped to shape the final design of both Rideau Street and William Street.

Q: With construction work comes construction-related noise. What is the City doing to mitigate noise?

A: The contractor is permitted to operate within the parameters of the Noise By-law:

  • Monday-Saturday: Between 7 am and 10 pm
  • Sundays and holidays: Between 9 am and 10 pm

Any work outside of working hours will require an approved Noise By-law exemption and residents will be made aware in advance of the work.

The contractor will take every precaution to minimize interruptions to everyday life but, as you can appreciate, there may be some inconvenience during the course of the work, such as delays when travelling around the construction zone, noise, dust and vibrations.

Q: Will utilities to nearby businesses and residents be impacted during the reconstruction? How will business and residents be notified when utilities (i.e. water, gas, electricity) are shut off?

A: During a construction project like this, there will be times where utilities, such as gas, water or electricity, will need to be interrupted. The project team will reach out to affected properties and will coordinate the best time to do so.

Q: Will garbage pick-up and snow removal be impacted during the road closure?

A: The contractor is responsible for the coordination of garbage pick-up and snow removal within the construction zone. All City services outside of the construction zone will continue as normal. The project team will monitor these activities closely during construction.

Q: Where can I find out more information about the project?

A: Our project webpage at ottawa.ca/rideaustreet is your go-to for background information about the project, current traffic impacts, notices, updates and more.

You can also subscribe to our newsletter to receive regular updates about the project. To do so, visit the sign-up page and enter your name and email address, click the box on ‘Rideau-William Street renewal’ and subscribe! You will get an email to confirm your subscription.

Q: What’s the best way to contact the project team?

A: For inquiries related to the Rideau Street and William Street Renewal project, please contact the City’s Project Manager, Vipin Bansal at 613-580-2424, extension 21276 or by email. For any emergency outside normal working hours on weekdays and weekends, please call the City at 3-1-1.