PIC Presentation

This page includes the slides presented at the November 26, 2020 live virtual Public Information Centre with a preliminary transcript below each slide. A recording of the presentation will be uploaded following the PIC.

Click on the image to enlarge.

Welcome to the QEW Glendale Avenue Interchange Replacement Public Information Centre.

The Brennan Construction and Morrison Hershfield team has been retained by the Ministry of Transportation to complete the detail design and construction of the Glendale Avenue interchange and associated works. This slide identifies the key project team, including myself Chris Brennan, the project manager on behalf of Brennan. Andrew Bernard and Rory Doherty are the assistant project managers and Jim Whitehead is the operations manager for Brennan. The design team of Morrison Hershfield is led by Martin Ma, the design manager. The MH team also includes Deb Crawford as the Environmental Manager, and Nick Crockford providing Environmental Planning and Consultation support. Josephine Yung is the Lead Structural engineer working on the design. Deb and Nick will be facilitating the presentation and taking everyone through the presentation materials.

This slide provides an outline for the presentation which includes, introductions, details on the meeting, the purpose of the meeting along with project background and purpose. It as well expresses the final designs for the Glendale avenue interchange, a roundabout at York road and airport road intersection and new airport road connection and a carpool lot. We will also discuss construction staging and traffic considerations as well next steps. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions which we will talk more about in the next slide.

This slide provides details for asking questions during the live presentation.

The purpose of this meeting is to present the final design and construction staging plan for the project and answer questions about the project. The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has retained Brennan Construction and Morrison Hershfield to design and construct the improvements at the QEW/Glendale Avenue interchange and surrounding municipal roads on behalf of Niagara Region.

In 2018 MTO, in partnership with Niagara Region, completed an environmental assessment (EA) and preliminary design for the project. The EA reviewed various alternatives for both the interchange and the intersection improvements and evaluated those alternatives based on a variety of factors. The EA was approved in March 2019. The project is now in the Detail Design phase which will construct the approved plan.

The project includes the following components which will be discussed further throughout the presentation.

  • Replacing the existing Glendale Avenue interchange with a Diverging Diamond Interchange.
  • Replacing the existing signalized intersection at Glendale Avenue and York Road with a single-lane roundabout.
  • Adding a new Airport Road connection from Glendale Avenue.
  • Providing a commuter parking lot within the interchange.
  • Active Transportation, associated culverts, signage, and lighting within the study area.

For the QEW and Glendale Avenue Interchange the final design includes:

  • A new bridge over the QEW to replace the existing Glendale Avenue bridge. Glendale Avenue will be realigned to the west which will allow the existing bridge to remain in service while construction on the new bridge is occurring. This methodology is intended to minimize disruption to the travelling public by keeping the existing travel patterns in place until the new bridge is ready for use.
  • New on and off ramps will be required at the interchange to facilitate the new the diverging diamond interchange configuration.>
  • New signage will be installed throughout the interchange.
  • Active transportation will be facilitated through the interchange on Glendale Avenue with the inclusion of a multiuse path.

The following two slides depict these project components and provide additional details.

This slide shows the entire project design. We'll spend a few moments here describing some of the project details at a high level before we cover the individual components in a moment. Primarily centred in the image is the new Diverging Diamond Interchange which is to be built beside the existing interchange structure. Moving south along Glendale Avenue, the new interchange will match the existing Glendale Avenue roughly near Glendale Avenue East intersection. Past Taylor Road, there are some improvements to Glendale Avenue providing additional lanes for southbound traffic turn off of Taylor Road. Moving back north over the highway you can see the purple asterisk shapes which indicate high mast lights which will ensure appropriate lighting throughout the interchange. As part of the project a roughly 3.0-kilometer section of the QEW stretching from the east end of the Garden City Skyway to the QEW/Highway 405 split will have the pavement replaced. On the north side of the interchange a carpool lot has been added north of the QEW and west of Glendale Avenue. Along with the carpool lot an access road from the Airport Road and York Road intersection will provide one entrance to the carpool lot. Additionally, a ramp from the northbound Glendale Avenue lanes will provide access to both the carpool lot and to travelers heading west on York Road or north on Airport Road. An entrance to the carpool lot will also be provide for Glendale Avenue Southbound traffic. Further north at the Glendale Avenue and York Road intersection a roundabout will be constructed. Throughout this plan we have shown pavement markings, signage (green sign boards) and as mentioned, lighting is shown in purple.

For this slide we have zoomed in on the QEW and Glendale Avenue interchange. The new interchange bridge over the QEW will be built adjacent to the existing structure and will include new ramps from all directions onto and off the QEW. The Interchange is designed as a Diverging Diamond Interchange which is discussed further on the next slides. The interchange is primarily lit with high mast LED lights with some additional conventional light poles in certain areas to ensure sufficient levels of light in all areas at night. The QEW will continue to carry 3 lanes of traffic in each direction and Glendale Avenue will continue to carry two lanes of traffic in each direction. Where the two directions of Glendale Avenue meet and cross each other on either side of the interchange, the intersections are signalized.

During the Environmental Assessment it was determined that the Diverging Diamond Interchange design was preferred over traditional styles of interchanges because it provides for:

  • Increased Efficiency - this style of interchange requires fewer movements in the interchange and also allows for unrestricted turning movements.
  • Increased Safety - fewer conflict points as the number of turning movements is reduced.
  • Enhanced Mobility - Pedestrian/cyclists are accommodated via the multiuse path and there are fewer vehicle/pedestrian crossing points. This also reduces travel time for pedestrians.

The diagram on this slide depicts a simple version of how traffic and pedestrians navigate through a DDI interchange. By having traffic cross each other at either end of the interchange, it provides for reduced conflicts point for vehicles accessing the highway ramps and those coming off the highway. It does this by having traffic converge at a signalized intersection and move from one side of the road to the other side of the road. There are two such intersections at each end of the interchange. Pedestrian and cyclists are also accommodated in this design by placing a multiuse path down the centre of the interchange. Pedestrians and cyclists also converge at the intersections and pass through the interchange between the traffic lanes. The pedestrians and cyclists on the multiuse path are separated and protected from the traffic by concrete barriers.

Given the proximity of the Glendale Avenue/York Road intersection to the interchange, the decision was made during the EA phase to complete work at this intersection at the same time as the interchange work. As such, a single-lane roundabout will be constructed at Glendale Avenue and York Road.

The roundabout will include partial channelization providing unrestricted right turn movements when travelling:
  • Northbound on Glendale Avenue to eastbound on York Road.
  • Westbound on York Road to southbound on Glendale Avenue.
  • The roundabout will improve traffic operations at this intersection.
This work is being completed on behalf of Niagara Region.

This slide depicts the roundabout design at the intersection of Glendale Avenue and York Road. As noted, the roundabout includes right turn channelization to provide for more efficient movements from northbound Glendale Avenue turn right onto York Road and from westbound York Road turning right onto Glendale Avenue. The inner circle of the roundabout will include decorative landscaping.

To improve traffic flows in the area, a new loop ramp and connection road will be made from Glendale Avenue connecting to the intersection at York Road and Airport Road as part of this project. The road will also provide access to a new commuter lot being built in the northwest quadrant of the interchange. This road will reduce traffic queuing at the Glendale Avenue and York Road intersection. This work is also being completed on behalf of Niagara Region.

This slide depicts the design of the connection ramp from the northbound lanes of Glendale Avenue looping back under Glendale Avenue and connecting to York Road at Airport Road. Also depicted is the new commuter lot being constructed in the northwest quadrant of the interchange. As with previous slides, the light poles are identified by purple asterisks and the pavement markings are shown. The locations of stop signs are also included in the figure.

In addition to the work noted in the previous slides the project includes adjustments to various culverts including removals and replacements as required by the design, for example new ramp locations; impacted high mast and conventional light poles, for example those that need to be removed as part of the design, will be converted to LED. Existing high mast poles that are not impacted will remain high pressure sodium. Landscaping will be provided within the centre of the roundabout and all areas disturbed by construction will be restored.

Construction work will be split into several distinct Stages. Stage 1, as depicted on this slide includes the following construction items.

  • Construct Glendale Avenue to QEW Niagara-bound detour ramp.
  • Construct QEW Niagara-bound to Glendale Avenue detour off ramp.
  • Construct Toronto-bound QEW to Glendale Avenue detour off ramp.
  • Construct Airport Road extension.
  • Shoulder widening for future traffic staging.
  • Construct north and south sides of the new Glendale Avenue structure.

During this phase the QEW eastbound and westbound lanes will be shifted towards the median. All other traffic will remain the same. Stage 1 is expected to begin in May 2021 and be completed in August 2021.

Stage 2, includes the following construction items:

  • Construct north and south sides of the new Glendale Avenue structure, the QEW Toronto-bound of ramp, and the Airport Road connection loop ramp.
  • Construct median piers of new QEW/Glendale Avenue underpass structure.
  • Reconstruct median catch basin and storm sewers on QEW/

Traffic considerations during stage 2 include the QEW eastbound and westbound lanes shifted to the outside shoulder constructed in stage 1 and switching to ramp detours constructed in the previous stage. Stage 2 is expected to begin in August 2021 and be completed in November 2021.

Stage 3, includes the following construction items:

  • Construct QEW/Glendale Avenue underpass structure.
  • Continue constructing the south side of the Glendale Avenue structure and construct the QEW Niagara-bound on ramp.
  • Continue to construct north side of the new Glendale Avenue structure, the QEW Toronto-bound of ramp, and the Airport Road connection loop ramp.
  • Construct QEW Toronto-bound detour ramp.
  • Traffic considerations during stage 3 include:

    • QEW eastbound and westbound lanes shifted to the median; all other traffic to remain on existing.
    • Only one southbound lane open between the York Road/Glendale Avenue intersection and the north ramp terminal.
    • A weekend closure of Glendale Avenue required prior to shifting traffic onto new Glendale Avenue in Stage 4. In order to tie in Glendale Avenue at the north and south limits of construction and ramp to Niagara-bound QEW.

    Stage 3 is expected to begin in November 2021 and be completed in June 2022.

Stage 4, includes the following construction items:

  • Construct the QEW Toronto-bound on ramp and the QEW Niagara-bound off ramp.
  • Construct new carpool lot and Airport Road connection.
  • Construct Glendale Avenue east connection road.
  • Demolish existing Glendale Avenue bridge.
  • Widen Glendale Avenue to the west, south of Taylor Road.

Traffic consideration during Stage 4 include:

  • QEW eastbound and westbound lanes shifted back to existing configuration.
  • Glendale Avenue shifted onto proposed alignment on diverging diamond configuration.
  • Continuous 60-day closure of QEW Niagara-bound off-ramp to construct ramp. Traffic to detour via QEW/ Mountain Road interchange. Detour route shown on the next slide.
  • QEW Toronto-bound traffic on detour via York Road and new Airport Road connection. Access to QEW Toronto-bound to be closed for one weekend for tie in construction, prior to shifting traffic onto the new ramp.
  • New QEW Niagara-bound on ramp and Toronto-bound off ramp open on proposed alignments.
  • Full closure of QEW required to demolish the existing Glendale Avenue bridge.

Stage 4 is expected to begin in June 2022 and be completed in October 2022.

This map shows the detour route for the 60-day closure noted in stage 4. For those travelling on the QEW in the Niagara Falls direction, they will be unable to exit at Glendale and will instead proceed down the QEW to the Mountain Road Interchange. Upon exiting at Mountain Road, the detour follows westbound along Mountain Road to Taylor Road. Travellers then head north on Taylor Road until they arrive at Glendale Avenue and can continue their journey from there.

Stage 5, is the final stage of construction and will take place between October 2022 and July 2023. The main work involved in Stage 5 is the construction of the roundabout at the Glendale Avenue and York Road intersection. This work will be completed in multiple stages.

  • Reconstruct south side of York Road and overbuild west of the intersection to provide the detour platform.
  • Reconstruct east side of Glendale Avenue, south of the intersection.
  • Reconstruct York Road in the median.
  • Reconstruct Glendale Avenue in the southwest quadrant of the intersection.
  • Reconstruct north side of York Road.
  • Reconstruct Glendale Avenue, north of the intersection.
  • Reconstruct the remainder of the intersection during a single weekend closure.

During all of stage 5, traffic movements will be adjusted as necessary to accommodate the construction area as needed. During Stage 5c, a full closure of Glendale Avenue will be required. Access to the Hilton Garden Inn will always be maintained. One full closure of the intersection is also required for one weekend during Stage 5c. Additionally, during Stage 5, final paving will be complete for all roadways as well as rehabilitating the pavement along the QEW from east of the Garden City Skyway to the QEW/Highway 405 split. This will require lane closures to complete. Stage 5 is expected to begin in October 2022 and be completed in July 2023.

There will be many considerations for the travelling public throughout construction. First, we'd like to highlight that access to businesses will remain open at all times. The existing Glendale Avenue will remain in operation until the new DDI bridge is construction and made operational in the Fall of 2022. We do expect there to be periodic ramp closures throughout construction. We will also require temporary lane closures on the QEW, but these will be during off peak times such as at night or on weekends. As noted, there will be off peak full closure of the QEW in order to demolish the existing Glendale Avenue bridge. This will not be until Stage 4 of construction in the later part of 2022. A preliminary detour plan has been developed and is in the process of being finalized. The detour route will be shown on the project website and included in the DCR that will be published in early 2021. For changes in traffic movements or closures, advance notification will be given as details become known.

This slide depicts the tentative schedule for the project.

The first Phase of the project is the design phase. This is the current phase for the project and will continue until Spring 2021. Within this phase several items are in progress or have been completed. We have already completed many of our site investigations in the Fall of 2020 and are currently in the process of completing the detail designs. This work will continue until the end of 2020. At the end of the design process we will publish a Design and Construction report which will detail the final designs and assess environmental impacts. The construction phase will begin in Spring of 2021 and continue until Summer 2023. The first stage of construction will be to complete construction laydown and reconfigure some of the ramps. This work will take place in the spring and summer of 2021. In the Summer of 2021, construction will begin on the new Glendale Avenue bridge. This work will proceed for roughly 1 year and be completed in summer 2022. Near the end of the completion, we will host a Public Education Session to provide an opportunity for members of the public to learn about how to use a DDI interchange. Sometime after that the new bridge in the DDI configuration will open. Once open, demolition of the existing bridge will begin as will construction of the roundabout intersection. This work will start in the fall and winter of 2022. Once the end of construction nears, landscaping and site restoration will be completed. All construction is expected to be completed in Summer 2023.

Appropriate investigations have been completed to determine the environmental impacts of the project:

  • Timing windows for tree clearing and in-water work will be adhered to in order to protect migratory birds, bats and fish and fish habitat.
  • Erosion and sediment controls will be installed and maintained throughout the duration of construction.
  • Landscaping has been included in the design and restoration will be completed for impacted areas, where feasible.

The project has been cleared of archaeological potential and no cultural heritage resources will be impacted.

Following the Public Information Centre, we will be finalizing the design and addressing any comments or questions we have received. Upon completion, a Design and Construction Report (DCR) will be available for a 45-day public review period in early 2021. The DCR will document the final design, environmental mitigation measures, and results of consultation. Notice of the DCR review period will be advertised in local papers, on our website and sent to those on the project's Stakeholder List. We are also in the process of acquiring any necessary permits and approvals. Pending receipt of those approvals, construction is anticipated to start in Spring of 2021.

Thank you for participating in the Public Information Centre for the QEW/Glendale Avenue Interchange project. If you have any questions please contact us at GlendaleDBTeam@morrisonhershfield.com