350 construction projects during summer in Ottawa
The 350 projects are expected to have a major impact on traffic
During what the city of Ottawa called an "unprecedented period of growth and transformation," it has announced hundreds of major construction projects.
Throughout the summer, the 350 projects are expected to have a major impact on traffic.
The construction includes the widening of several roads and bridge improvements.
Highway 417 will be widened from Nicholas to the 417/174 split, causing lane reductions on 174 from west of Blair Road to St. Laurent Boulevard in late May. The Lees Avenue on-ramp is also set to close in the middle of June, allowing for work to be done on a Transitway structure.
Residents will get advance notice of the official start dates of construction, the city said.
Ottawa's deputy manager of operations, Steve Kanellakos, said the city is ready to manage and minimize the construction-related traffic disruptions for the public.
"We're ahead of it. We're planning," he said. "We're building in all kinds of contingencies."
Residents will still need to change their commuting routines like they have in the past, Kanellakos said.
"It will take effort by the community and by residents to change their habits and their patterns," he said.
Deputy mayor Steve Desroches said the delays will be hard in the short term, but will be worth it in the end.
"It's going to, I'm sure, test the patience of some residents, but I think we have to recognize this is short-term pain for long-term gain," he said.
These are projects we've been asking for, in some cases begging for," he said.
The city recommended that commuters use transit, carpooling, cycling and walking to increase traffic flow. Motorists will also be informed of road closures, lane reductions and other traffic changes through road signs.
OC Transpo will assist in the construction process by providing additional buses from Orleans during the Highway 417 construction.