Ottawa

Hwy. 417 reopens after crews install Harmer Avenue bridge span

Traffic on Highway 417 is back to normal after crews installed the main span of the new Harmer Avenue pedestrian and cycling bridge overnight.

Queensway had been closed overnight for construction

Workers install the main span of a new bridge for pedestrians and cyclists across Highway 417 at Harmer Avenue on Oct. 20, 2019. (Jeff Leiper)

Traffic on Highway 417 is back to normal after crews installed the main span of the new Harmer Avenue pedestrian and cycling bridge overnight.

The Queensway was closed from Bronson Avenue to Carling Avenue in both directions during the work. The city tweeted Sunday morning that both eastbound and westbound lanes had reopened.

Crews were also reopening ramps onto the highway and exits off the highway.

Kitchissippi Coun. Jeff Leiper said replacing the Harmer Avenue bridge was long overdue.

"For several years now drivers on the Queensway who have been passing underneath have noticed the concrete coming loose," he said.

The city had to take measures to ensure chunks of the 55-year-old bridge, normally used by hundreds of people daily, didn't fall onto traffic, said Leiper. 

"It was time for it to be replaced," Leiper said.

The new $13.5 million crossing is made out of steel and enclosed in glass. It's also wider to give pedestrians and cyclists more space, and the ramps leading up to it are a more gentle grade in order to meet modern accessibility standards.

An artist rendering shows what the new pedestrian bridge across the Queensway at Harmer Avenue could look like when it's completed. The structure is made of steel and glass. (City of Ottawa)

"It's absolutely gorgeous," said Leiper.

The city aims to complete the project and have the bridge open by June 2020.

with files from Radio-Canada's Martin Robert

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