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Project updates

Everything you need to know about the Stage 2 LRT O-Train West Extension Cut and Cover Tunnels

Project Spotlight: East Rail Flyover Bridge

Bridging Stage 1 with Stage 2: Everything you need to know about the Stage 2 O-Train East Extension Rail Flyover Bridge

Along the O-Train East Extension, light rail trains will operate in the centre median of Highway 174, from Blair Road to Trim Road.

Making space for the tracks within the median has required a relocation of both eastbound and westbound highway lanes as well as access ramps in certain areas. But have you wondered how the trains will actually get from the existing transit alignment on the north side of the highway into the median itself?

A new dedicated rail bridge will be constructed 800m east of the Highway 174 and Blair Road interchange and the existing bus transit bridge, south of Trillium Park. The trains will then travel 12 km east from Blair Station in the median until the end of the transit line at Trim Station.

O-Train Light-Rail Transit East Extension Map
O-Train Light-Rail Transit East Extension Map

How do you construct a Rail Flyover Bridge?

Building an elevated rail structure is a complex undertaking requiring significant design, engineering and construction expertise. It is made even more challenging when it has to be constructed over several lanes of live traffic on a major highway, transporting thousands of vehicles every day.

Over the past few decades construction methods have evolved to reduce traffic impact, facilitate building in congested areas, reduce overall construction schedules, and improve the long-term service life of structures.

Construction begins with drilled shafts, which are deep foundation supports for a bridge. At the flyover they are anywhere from 15 to 28 meters deep into the ground. First, drilling of the ground begins with a casing that holds back the soil from caving into the hole. Once completed, a steel cage fabricated to fit the hole is placed inside. To complete the work, concrete is poured inside to secure the cage. The casing is then removed, creating the supportive drilled shaft.

Then, bridge columns and column caps or “hammer heads” will be constructed, upon which precast concrete girders will sit. Precast concrete girders are horizontal supports for the bridge, that rest on top of the column caps.

One of these caps (also known as a “straddle bent”), will span westbound lanes of the highway to carry the tracks over the vehicular lanes without any columns within the road footprint. Once installed, a concrete deck will be built using precast panels lifted into place. Finally, the track and barriers will be installed to carry LRT trains.

Heavy equipment will be used extensively during the flyover bridge construction including bulldozers, excavators, asphalt mixers, formworks, and fabrication equipment. Every effort is made to minimize the impact on the local community during construction.

Aerial rendering of the rail flyover bridge, east of Blair Road (Looking North)
Aerial rendering of the rail flyover bridge, east of Blair Road (Looking North)

 

Relocation of Highway 174 lanes

In order to create enough space for the bridge work zone, crews need to establish a construction zone in the median of the highway, east of the transitway. Relocation of Highway 174 lanes began in Fall 2019, with the eastbound lanes. Since then, traffic past the Blair Road interchange has been pushed south to a new alignment. Westbound traffic will temporarily be moved into the eastbound lanes, to create a larger work zone on the north side of Highway 174.

Photo of asphalt breaking needs to be done in order to demolish the old highway and create the work zone for the new bridge.
Photo of asphalt breaking needs to be done in order to demolish the old highway and create the work zone for the new bridge.

Photo of new and old highway alignment (facing westbound on Highway 174)
Photo of new and old highway alignment (facing westbound on Highway 174)

Photo of realignment construction work as seen at night (looking east on Highway 174)
Photo of realignment construction work as seen at night (looking east on Highway 174)

 

Fun Facts
  • The O-Train East Extension Flyover Rail Bridge is approximately 240m long.
  • On average the bridge is 5m in height
  • In order to support the rail bridge, there are six columns, two abutments, and 21 girders.
  • In total there will be 1275m³ of concrete poured to create the bridge.

Project Spotlight: Upgrades for the Dows Lake Trillium Line Tunnel

What’s up down under Dows Lake?

While Ottawa’s residents were out safely enjoying scenic summer views and socially-distanced water sports on Dows Lake, the TransitNEXT crew continue to make headway on construction upgrade works in the tunnel under Dows Lake as part of the Trillium Line South Extension Project stretching between Carling Station and Carleton Station. This work will help ensure a safe, efficient, environmentally-friendly LRT connection under Dows Lake and will continue through the Winterlude and Tulip Festival seasons in 2021.

TransitNEXT crews have been removing older, existing rail from the Dows Lake Tunnel to make way for the construction of the new LRT tracks. The rail removal is being undertaken along the entire length of the 578-metre tunnel. Once all removed, the hardwood track ties will also be removed and assessed by a certified track inspector for re-use suitability. Ties found to be suitable will be re-used in other areas of the project and ties not suitable for use will be disposed of in an environmentally-friendly manner.

Prior to construction getting underway, TransitNEXT conducted detailed inspections of the Dows Lake Tunnel. The complexity of the construction work under a body of water, and amidst the COVID-19 situation, requires significant coordination to ensure quality control and the safety of both crews and surrounding communities.

TransitNEXT’s Design Team has also been producing a virtual 3D Building Information Model (BIM) of the entire tunnel including the pump house, to ensure a well-coordinated design and avoid issues during construction. The Design and Construction Teams are also collaborating on an on-going basis with the Maintenance Team to assess and formulate preferred solutions in the virtual space, before construction.

Safety First

In early June 2020, the TransitNEXT Safety Team, Ottawa Fire Services, and the Special Operations Division of Ottawa Paramedic Service conducted a “collaborative walk-through” of the Dows Lake Tunnel, to proactively protect the TransitNEXT crew as well as the public during tunnel construction activities. The temporary shut-down of the train and walk through of the tunnel provided an important opportunity for Ottawa’s Emergency Service providers to get a first-hand look at the areas they would need to access in the event of an emergency incident in or near the tunnel.

Some of the topics of discussion included:

  • Accessibility on how Emergency First Responders get in an out of the tunnel
  • Conditions rescue teams face on the rail tracks and in the tunnel
  • Confirmation that Emergency Response Plan is in place for construction.

Late in June, in a team exercise with the Ottawa Fire Department, TransitNEXT ran a functionality test on the Fire standpipe in the tunnel. This allowed the team to ensure that all services are familiar with the use of the systems, components and processes that are in place. The health and safety of front-line workers is always the highest priority and this preparedness exercise was a key undertaking before construction began.

 Safety Partners Walk-through of Dows Lake Tunnel
June 3, 2020 Safety Partners Walk-through of Dows Lake Tunnel with TransitNEXT Safety Team, Ottawa Fire Services and Ottawa Paramedic Service - North Portal

Safety Partners Walk-through of Dows Lake Tunnel
June 3, 2020 Safety Partners Walk-through of Dows Lake Tunnel with TransitNEXT Safety Team, Ottawa Fire Services and Ottawa Paramedic Service

Dows Lake Tunnel by the numbers:
  • Length of tunnel: 578 metres in length with 23 reinforced concrete box segments separated by expansion joints
  • Height of tunnel: approximately 6.7 metres high from the top of the rail
  • Width of tunnel: approximately 5.1 metres wide
About the Dows Lake Tunnel and its upgrades:

The Dows Lake Tunnel is a critical piece of infrastructure providing a north-south connection along the Trillium Line. Originally built and owned by Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR), it opened for operation in 1964 as a rail tunnel to accommodate freight trains. The tunnel was easily converted for use by OC-Transpo in 2001 for the O-Train (today’s Trillium Line).

The TransitNEXT Team is working with the City of Ottawa and its partners to address several historical challenges through design and construction of the tunnel’s upgrades:

  • Improving the water infiltration management system at expansion joints by performing joint repairs.
  • Upgrading and providing maintenance of the drainage system including the installation of a new pump system and ensuring the adequacy of the existing drainage system capacity.
  • Upgrades to the tunnel’s track ties, standpipe system, ventilation system, and emergency walkway to align with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) -130 standards.

Tracking Stage 2 Trillium Line Rail Bridge Work

Stage 2 Confederation Line West Extension Spring 2020 Update

Stage 2 Trillium Line South Extension Spring 2020 Update

Stage 2 Confederation Line East Extension Spring 2020 Update

Stage 2 Trillium Line South Extension construction taking off at the Ottawa International Airport

Rescheduled - Highway 174 westbound to close between Trim Road and Tenth Line Road overnight on Saturday

A section of Highway 174 westbound will close in between Trim Road and Tenth Line Road to remove overhead signage, weather permitting. The work was scheduled for last weekend but was delayed because of inclement weather.

Learn More

Highway 174 westbound to close between Trim Road and Tenth Line Road overnight on Saturday

A section of Highway 174 westbound will close in between Trim Road and Tenth Line Road to remove overhead signage, weather permitting. Westbound lane reductions are scheduled to start at 10:30 pm with the closure of all westbound lanes at 11 pm on Saturday, March 28.

Learn More

Highway 174 to fully close between Champlain Street and Tenth Line Road overnight on Saturday

A section of Highway 174 will close in both directions between Champlain Street and Tenth Line Road to remove signage. The westbound closure will start at 11 pm on Saturday, March 21 and will be in place until 6 am on Sunday, March 22.

Learn More

Stage 2 LRT East Extension Information Session

Posted: 
Wednesday, March 11, 2020, 4:28 pm
Last updated: 
Wednesday, March 18, 2020, 8:50 am

Dates & Times

Monday, April 6, 2020,
6:30 pm to 8:30 pm

Location

Community Pentecostal Church
1825 St Joseph Boulevard
Ottawa, ON

Accessibility is an important consideration for the City of Ottawa. If you have any questions or require special accommodation to attend, please contact the project team.

The O-Train system is extending farther south, east, and west as part of the Stage 2 Light Rail Transit Project.

The City of Ottawa is hosting a drop-in information session where project team members will be available to answer questions one-on-one about connectivity designs and construction plans.

Contact

Stage 2 O-Train Light Rail Transit Project Construction Summary: East Extension June through December 2019

This notice is to advise that, as part of the Stage 2 O-Train Light Rail Transit project, crews and equipment will be working at multiple locations in the east, south, and west areas of Ottawa, supporting design and construction of extensions to the O-Train transit network.

This overview highlights the key activities in the East Extension area scheduled to occur throughout the remainder of 2019. To learn more about what’s being planned, please visit the project website at ottawa.ca/stage2.

WHAT’S HAPPENING ALONG THE EAST EXTENSION CORRIDOR

From Blair Station to Trim Station

Borehole Investigations and Survey Activity (Underway)

Geotechnical investigations are taking place along the east extension corridor to collect soil, water and bedrock data. In some areas, temporary and intermittent night work will be required to ensure public safety and to minimize the impacts to motorists in high-traffic areas. For information on temporary night work approved in your area, please visit the project website at ottawa.ca/stage2.

Intermittent lane closures may also be required in immediate work areas as crews move between borehole locations. Noise from drilling and related activities could reach moderate levels at times. Depending on the data from borehole investigations, new borehole locations and repeat investigations may be required during daytime and nighttime hours.

Crews are also conducting survey work along the east corridor, scheduled during daytime hours. This includes survey equipment set-up and collecting elevation data both on and off-street. Minimal disruption is expected to traffic and local areas.

Highway 174 and Perimeter Area Work (Begins in Summer)

On-street roadwork is required to widen traffic lanes on the south side of Highway 174 (eastbound lanes). This includes area clearing and tree/vegetation removal, grading and excavation, utility relocation, backfill and asphalt work in preparation to shift vehicular traffic to the south side. This will allow future guideway work to begin in the centre median area, away from active traffic lanes. Intermittent eastbound lane closures on Highway 174 may be required during off-peak or overnight hours as crews and equipment construct the new traffic lanes. All traffic will be maintained in both directions along Highway 174 although minor off-peak delays to eastbound traffic may occur at times.

WHAT’S HAPPENING LOCALLY NEAR STATION AREAS

Borehole and survey activities are also occurring locally around station areas during daytime construction hours, and during nighttime hours only if required. Additional activity in preparation for station work is also scheduled to begin in 2019 and is highlighted below.

Montreal Station Area Preparation Work (Begins in Summer)

To the west of Montreal Station (between the existing Blair Station and the future Montreal Station), utility relocation and foundation work is scheduled to begin in preparation to build the new elevated LRT guideway that will connect to Blair Station. This includes area clearing and tree/vegetation removal, grading and excavation, utility relocation and foundation work. These activities will not affect Blair Station and is currently scheduled for daytime hours. To the east of Montreal Station, utility relocation and foundation is scheduled in preparation for future work in the Montreal interchange.

In the Montreal Station area, local utility relocation work includes fence installation, clearing and tree/vegetation removal, excavation, utility relocation and/or tie-ins to existing underground utilities. If required, brief service disruption may occur as the new utility service is connected. In addition to utility relocation adjacent to the north and south of Highway 174, Shefford Road near the Montreal Station area is also scheduled for utility relocation work. This is currently scheduled during daytime hours and access to all residences will be maintained.

To the south of Highway 174, east of Montreal Station, crews will also be building a temporary project office, which is not anticipated to result in traffic pattern changes or nighttime activity. This includes area clearing and tree/vegetation removal, utility and groundwork, followed by constructing a temporary site office to be operational during the construction period.

Jeanne D’Arc Station Area Preparation Work (Begins in Fall)

Utility relocation around the Jeanne D’Arc Station area includes fence installation, excavation, utility relocation and/or tie-ins in conflict with the station area. Work in this area is not anticipated to affect local roads in the station vicinity, but brief service disruption may occur as the new utility services are connected. This work is also scheduled to occur primarily during daytime hours.

Trim Station Area Preparation Work (Begins in Fall)

Area clearing and site preparation at Trim Station may also begin before the end of 2019. This activity includes grading and excavating the existing overflow area parking lot, tree/vegetation removal and local utility relocation. This work is not anticipated to affect motorists in the immediate area and is scheduled during daytime hours.

DATES AND HOURS OF WORK

Confirmed timeframes and implementation details for key activities will be posted to the project website at ottawa.ca/Stage2. Please note the timeframes in this summary are estimated and subject to change.

Construction activity is primarily scheduled to occur during typical daytime construction hours between 7am and 10pm Monday to Saturday, and between 9am to 10pm on Sunday’s and holidays. Nightwork will be required at times to minimize the impact to motorists or for public safety. Appropriate notice will be provided for any adjacent nightwork.

ANTICIPATED IMPACTS

Pedestrian, cyclist and vehicle access will be maintained during construction although minor delays to traffic may occur at times. Temporary crossings may be implemented in designated areas and pedestrians and cyclists should use extra caution as traffic patterns change. Motorists should be aware of and adhere to traffic control signage, posted speed limits and traffic control personnel. Changes to OC Transpo services are not anticipated and transit stops will remain accessible. Noise and temporary disruptions are not anticipated to be significant during these activities. Please note that all tree replacement as part of final restoration will be in accordance with the tree compensation plan for the project, and area restoration (such as re-seeding greenspaces) will be completed as part of local area finishing works.

The safety of workers and the public is paramount, and we thank you for your patience during construction.

WHAT’S NEXT

In early 2020, crews will continue with site mobilization in additional areas, continued roadwork and preparation for construction of stations, structures, and the guideway. Please stay connected with our team as we report on our progress and provide our 2020 construction look-ahead at the end of this year.

 

For further information about this project, please contact our project team:

Rail Construction Program

City of Ottawa

Email: stage2@ottawa.caPhone: 3-1-1

Stage 2 O-Train Light Rail Transit Construction Summary: West Extension June through September

the east, south and west areas of Ottawa, supporting design and construction of extensions to the O-Train transit network.

This overview highlights the key activities in the West Extension area scheduled to occur in stages and concurrently throughout the remainder of 2019. For additional area-specific information and to learn more about what’s being planned for community outreach, please visit the project website at ottawa.ca/stage2.

WHAT’S HAPPENING ALONG THE WEST EXTENSION CORRIDOR

From Moodie Station and Baseline Station to Westboro Station

Borehole Investigations and Survey Activity (Underway)

Geotechnical investigations are taking place on and off-street along the west extension corridor to collect soil, water and bedrock data. In some areas, temporary and intermittent night work will be required to ensure public safety and to minimize the impacts to motorists in high-traffic areas. Nighttime borehole activity is also scheduled to occur along the Transitway parallel to Highway 417, although changes to transit service are not required. For more information, please visit the project website at ottawa.ca/stage2.

Intermittent lane closures may also be required in immediate work areas as crews move between borehole locations. Noise from drilling and related activities will occur at moderate levels at times. Data gathered from the borehole investigations may lead to new borehole locations or repeat investigations may be required.

Crews are also conducting survey work along the west corridor, which is scheduled during daytime hours.

This includes equipment set-up and collecting survey elevation data. Minimal disruption in local areas is expected with minimal effects to traffic.

Building Demolition (Begins in Fall)

Building demolition within the project limits will occur on the east side of Connaught Avenue between Severn Avenue and Hanlon Avenue (three structures), and on Richmond Road east of Cleary Avenue (one structure). These activities are scheduled to be completed during daytime hours and will result in localized lane closures while crew remove material and debris.

WHAT’S HAPPENING LOCALLY NEAR STATION AREAS

Borehole and survey activities are also occurring locally around station areas during daytime construction hours, and during nighttime hours only if required. Additional activity in preparation for station work is also scheduled to begin in 2019 and is highlighted below. Please note that activity around station areas not listed below is not currently scheduled this year.

Moodie Station and Baseline Station Area Preparation Work (Begins in Summer)

Crews are scheduled begin area clearing and utility relocation work in preparation for building a temporary construction site/maintenance office near Moodie Drive and Corkstown Road, near Holly Acres north of Highway 417, near Baseline Road and Woodroffe Avenue and on Iris Street east of Parkway Drive. This activity is schedule to occur during daytime hours and may require intermittent localized lane closures if required. Brief service disruption may occur as the new utility services are connected.

Crews may also perform area clearing, site preparation and utility relocation at the Light Maintenance and Storage Facility (LMSF) south of Corkstown Road west of Moodie Drive. This activity is scheduled to occur during daytime hours and may require intermittent localized lane closures. Crews are also scheduled to begin clearing and site preparation work south of Highway 417 between Holly Acres Road and Richmond Road.

Bayshore Station Area Preparation Work (Begins in Summer/Fall)

Area preparation activity for the pedestrian crossing to access the future Bayshore Station area includes clearing, tree/vegetation removal, utility installation, signaling and roadwork adjacent to and across Woodridge Crescent. Work in these areas are primarily off-street and scheduled during daytime construction hours.

NOTICE TO RESIDENTS

Lincoln Fields Station Area Preparation (Begins in Fall)

Roadwork is required to relocate underground utilities along the north side of Carling Avenue, between the Carling Avenue and Richmond Road area and on Byron Avenue. This includes area clearing and tree/vegetation removal, grading and excavation, utility relocation, backfill and asphalt work. Temporary traffic lane closures may be required in these areas although vehicle and pedestrian access will be maintained. Following this activity, a temporary detour on Carling Avenue in the Lincoln Fields Station area is scheduled to allow future guideway work to proceed away from active traffic lanes.

Work Between Cleary, Dominion and Westboro Station Areas (Begins in Summer)

Preparatory activities are underway on Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway between Dominion Avenue and Cleary Avenue. These activities include site mobilization and fence installation, tree/vegetation removal, utility relocation and roadworks in preparation to temporarily shift traffic away from the cut-and-cover area. Once completed, all traffic will be shifted to the north side of the Parkway that will allow the future cut-and-cover construction to safely occur on the south side without interfering with active traffic lanes. Limited nightwork may be required to avoid impacts to traffic.

The existing pedestrian/cyclist pathway near this area may be affected at times and alternative access will be maintained. A temporary site trailer will also be installed within the project limits of Rochester Field but will not impede pedestrian or cyclist access. Activity in this area is scheduled to occur during daytime hours, although limited nighttime activity may be required to avoid peak traffic times. Utility relocation around the Kitchissippi Lookout, Atlantis Avenue and Lanark Avenue area is also scheduled, which may result in local traffic pattern changes in immediate work areas.

DATES AND HOURS OF WORK

Confirmed timeframes and implementation details for key activities will be posted to the project website at ottawa.ca/stage2. Please note the timeframes in this summary are estimated and subject to change.

Construction activity is primarily scheduled to occur during typical daytime construction hours between 7am and 10pm Monday to Saturday, and between 9am to 10pm on Sunday’s and holidays. Intermittent nightwork will be required at times to minimize the impact to motorists or for public safety.

ANTICIPATED IMPACTS

Pedestrian, cyclist and vehicle access will be maintained during construction although minor delays to traffic may occur at times. Temporary pathways and crossings will be implemented in designated areas and pedestrians and cyclists should use extra caution as traffic patterns change. Motorists should be aware of and adhere to traffic control signage, posted speed limits and traffic control personnel. Changes to OC Transpo services are not anticipated and transit stops will remain accessible. Noise and temporary disruptions are not anticipated to be significant during these activities. Please note that all tree replacement as part of final restoration will be in accordance with the tree compensation plan for the project, and area restoration (such as re-seeding greenspaces) will be completed as part of local area finishing works.

The safety of workers and the public is paramount, and we thank you for your patience during construction.

WHAT’S NEXT

In early 2020, crews will continue with site mobilization in additional areas, continued roadwork and preparation for station, guideway, structures and cut-and-cover construction. Please stay connected with our team as we report on our progress and provide our 2020 construction look-ahead at the end of this year.

For further information about this project, please contact our project team:

Rail Construction Program

City of Ottawa

Email: ottawa.ca/stage2

Phone: 3-1-1

Archived - City of Ottawa and East-West Connectors (EWC) reach financial close on Stage 2 Confederation Line East and West Extensions

Today, the City of Ottawa and East-West Connectors (EWC) reached financial close on the Stage 2 Confederation Line Extension Project.

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Archived - City of Ottawa and TransitNEXT reach financial close on Stage 2 Trillium Line south extension

Today, the City of Ottawa and TransitNEXT reached financial close on the Stage 2 Trillium Line south extension.

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Archived - Council approves Budget 2019 and Stage 2 light-rail transit

Council today approved the budget for 2019 and Stage 2 light-rail transit, allowing construction of the City’s O-Train network expansion to begin this year.

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