Wednesday

BREAKING NEWS!!!! TRAFFIC CHAOS IN MERRITTON - SEPT 2013

One can only imagine the nightmare this construction project is going to cause during rush hours and weekends on one of  Merrittons main throughways.

There is already 8 sets of traffic lights in a 1.16 km span. What's proposed below will add another set.

What do you think?




http://www.stcatharinesstandard.ca/2013/02/26/car-pool-lot-would-be-tight-squeeze-on-glendale-ave

By Doug Herod, The Standard



Went to an information session Monday to check out plans to replace the Highway 406 bridge over Glendale Ave.
It’s pretty much what I had reported in a column last summer.
The northbound and southbound spans are old (built in 1963) and the transportation ministry will use a relatively new technique to replace them.
The new structures will be built on temporary supports next to the existing ones. Once the new spans are completed, the old ones will be severed and taken away by a giant forklift-like machine. The same machine will then move the new spans into place.
Where possible, this is an increasingly favoured method of the ministry’s because it results in minimal traffic disruption during the construction period. It’s a welcome strategy in this instance, given the congestion around the Pen Centre
There were, however, a couple of surprises at the information meeting.
The project is moving ahead more quickly than I would have thought. Work is expected to begin this fall, with most of the construction taking place next year. Some cleanup will extend into 2015.
Even more of a surprise was the inclusion of a 100-space, car-pool parking lot in the project design. It’s on the south side of Glendale on a vacant piece of MTO-owned land between the southbound 406 ramp and the TD bank.
There is also provision for a bus loop beside the lot in case Metrolinx decides to extend GO bus service along the 406 corridor.
I’m thinking this is an odd spot for the first-ever, car-pool lot in the city. Actually, I’m having trouble believing there’s that much demand for car-pooling in St. Catharines, period. That’s what happens, I guess, when you live and work in the same city for 33 years and endure seven-minute commutes.
At any rate, it strikes me as a tight squeeze.
Turns out Niagara Region officials aren’t too keen on the location, either.
“We’ve said to them — oh, at least eight or 10 times — ‘not a good idea,’” said the Region’s transportation boss Joe Cousins.
“I guess you can’t see that intersection too well from Downsview [central region headquarters] because they don’t understand the congestion there,” he said.
Adding to the disconnect is that the ministry wants full access to and from the parking lot, which means allowing left turns from and onto Glendale. But the Region has recently been looking at ways to improve traffic flow in this corridor, and one of its likely recommended solutions is to extend the centre-island median along Glendale, which would prevent such turns.
“If you’ve been there on a Friday afternoon, you know trying to make a left in and out of either the bank or the gas station just doesn’t work. It’s not safe at all,” said Cousins.
On the MTO’s map, the proposed entrance/exit to the car-pool lot lines up with the easternmost entrance to the Pen, giving rise to the idea of a traffic signal. But Cousins said there’s not enough room for another set of lights between Tremont Dr. and the 406.
So far, though, the ministry isn’t bending on its parking lot desires.
“Despite our insistence that it’s a terrible idea, they keep coming back with it,” said Cousins.
He noted the Region is in favour of other suggested car-pooling sites in Niagara. Apparently, there is the possibility for car-pool lots at the QEW and Glendale, Woodlawn Rd. and Highway 406 in Welland, and even the proposed new interchange at Third St. and the QEW.
“We just don’t like this location,” he said of the 406 and Glendale.
Stay tuned.
doug.herod@sunmedia.ca

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