Office of Councillor Jeff Leiper, Kitchissippi Ward, Ottawa | (613) 580-2485  |
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Buses to detour around temporary Roosevelt bridge

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Good morning, Kitchissippi.

Last night, the decision was taken by OC Transpo to detour buses off the temporary Transitway bridge that was erected to carry bus traffic from Westboro to Dominion Stations. The detour will be of an unknown duration, with buses travelling via the Churchill/Richmond route. It was deemed necessary in light of the significant noise in the neighbourhood generated by buses traversing the new steel Bailey bridge, particularly when they pass over the lip separating the bridge’s span from the roadway.

The detour to accommodate construction of the LRT began early Sunday morning. I was on the first bus to travel over the span and at around 4 am that morning began collecting video and noise readings. On Monday morning both residents and I reached out to the LRT team to alert them to the very jarring noise being produced. My office and I have been in frequent contact over the past several days with the LRT team expressing the urgency with which I feel this issue has to be addressed. The neighbourhood cannot be asked to tolerate this for the several years construction will take, and I fully support the decision to implement the detour away from the bridge.

Last night, I posed a series of questions to LRT about timelines, solutions, impacts and responsibilities. It will likely be several days before I can begin communicating answers. In the meantime, however, adjacent neighbours will be able to sleep.

I know the diversion comes on the heels of having just finalized the final configuration of Churchill with new lane markings and turn restrictions at Richmond that from my observations seem to have addressed intersection safety and congestion. We’ll only know what the effect of adding buses back into the mix will have. Based on my observations Wednesday afternoon, PM peak traffic is moving well now, and I hope the effect of adding buses staggered by the Churchill light won’t have too great an impact, but time will tell.

Given that Dominion Station will be by-passed, I have asked OC Transpo to maintain some service at Richmond/Roosevelt.

Diverting buses in this fashion isn’t going to be sustainable for the duration of LRT construction. It will add time to riders’ travel in addition to the increased congestion on local streets. It is critical that the noise issue on the bridge be addressed as quickly as humanly possible for the sake of neighbours, area residents, and residents city-wide traveling through this corridor.

I'll keep folks updated as I can.

Posted June 30, 2022