City says residents should expect 'busiest construction season ever' this year
According to city officials, Toronto residents should be ready for “the busiest construction season ever” this summer.
On Monday, Toronto Mayor John Tory launched the beginning of the 2019 construction season, saying that more than $1 billion worth of projects are planned.
“We are accelerating as many of them as we possibly can. It will be a busier summer on our roads and in our neighbourhoods with this work taking place but I think that people will understand this is work that is necessary to be undertaken in order to build a better Toronto,” Tory said at a news conference.
“It’s important to remember that every single one of us relies on our road network. Every one of us relies on the water infrastructure – every person, every business, every job.”
The city will spend about $590 million on roadwork and transportation infrastructure, which means that more than 600 roads in Toronto will be under construction throughout the season.
An additional $480 million will be spent on water infrastructure, which includes work on watermains, sewers, basement flooding protection and storm water management projects.
City councillor James Pasternak said that the city realizes these projects “will be dirty and in many ways disruptive” to residents, but asks that Torontonians be patient as crews complete their work.
“As with many cities around the world, Toronto has experienced its share of extreme weather events that flooded roads and basements and damaged critical infrastructure, costing tens of million in repairs,” Pasternak said. “This is all important work that needs to get done.”
“Local residents will derive great benefits from these projects once completed. It is incumbent on all of us to work together as we invest in Toronto,” Pasternak said.
In order to accelerate the projects and minimize traffic congestion, the city will extend work hours for key projects. The city said that 63 projects will operate on extended hours, including overnight and 24/7 work.
The repairs do not include civic improvements or repairs planned by utility companies, transit authorities or developers.
“I hope people recognize this is their tax dollars at work. It is work that must be done and that should not be postponed,” Tory said. “While nobody wants a construction site on their doorstep or delays to their daily commute, this is crucial work that has to get done some time.”
Here are some of the major projects the city has planned for this year:
- Kipling Avenue, Bloor Street West and Dundas Street West, Six Points Interchange Reconfiguration;
- Four bridges over the Don Valley Parkway, rehabilitation of Don Mills Road, Spanbridge Road, Wynford Drive and Lawrence Avenue bridges;
- Gardiner Expressway Strategic Rehabilitation from Jarvis Street to Cherry Street, first phase;
- Bloor Street West from Bathurst Street to Spadina Avenue, watermain replacement, streetscaping, bike lane construction and road resurfacing;
- Richmond Street from York Street to Bathurst Street, watermain replacement;
- Jarvis Street from Dundas Street to Queen Street, road resurfacing (resuming from 2018);
- Don and Central Waterfront, first phase, Coxwell Bypass Tunnel boring;
- Queen Street East and Eastern Avenue, TTC track replacement;
- Birchmount Road from Eglinton Avenue East to Lawrence Avenue East, road resurfacing;
- Midland Avenue from Danforth Avenue to Lawrence Avenue East, road reconstruction;
- Old Weston Road from St. Clair Avenue West to Rowntree Avenue, road resurfacing;
- Royal York from Dixon Road to Summitcrest Drive, road resurfacing;
- York Mills Road from Leslie Street to Don Mills Road, road resurfacing;
- Willowdale Avenue from Empress Avenue to Finch Avenue, road resurfacing and bike lane installation; and
- Bayview Avenue over the west Don River, bridge repairs.