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Bloor makes CAA ‘Worst Roads’ list

Construction to continue on Bloor with watermain replacement

Bloor Street

Following the construction word done on Bloor Street East over the last two years, it’s now time for the western portion to be completed. A watermain replacement starting this summer is set to close Bloor Street West at Simcoe Street South and force the closure of the 401 off-rap to Simcoe Street.

Dave Flaherty/The Oshawa Express

Although it didn’t crack the provincial top 10, Oshawa’s Bloor Street West still gained a mention within CAA’s Worst Roads in Ontario results in 2017.

The street, known regionally as Durham Road 22 and runs from Mackie Street to Simcoe Street South within the city, was named the fifth worst in the Halton, Peel, York and Durham regions, coming in behind fourth place Bayview Avenue in Richmond Hill, third place New Street in Burlington, second worst Zephyr Road in Uxbridge and the worst road Highway 7 in Markham.

Joanne Paquette, communications manager for Durham Region’s works department, said a portion of Bloor Street West has been pegged for rehabilitation work but other infrastructure requirements need to be addressed first.

“Any road rehabilitation work has to be coordinated and scheduled with other necessary underground infrastructure work that would affect the road surface,” Paquette told The Oshawa Express in a June 6 e-mail. “This cycle of planning around other capital works is ongoing through every budget cycle to coordinate the work and make the best use of our resources.”

The other capital works Paquette is referring to is an extensive watermain construction project along the Bloor Street corridor.

Jim McGilton, manager of environmental services design for the region, said the watermain construction ties to a new feeder system that will carry large volumes of water between Oshawa and Whitby.

As reported in The Oshawa Express earlier this year, work is scheduled to begin this year and will take place between Albert Street and Stevenson Road.

McGilton said the most significant interruptions to local traffic will happen when the work hits the Bloor Street West bridge over the Oshawa Creek.

“There will be no traffic (on that section of Bloor Street) for 16 weeks,” McGilton said, adding that the Hwy. 401 off-ramp to Simcoe will also be closed during that period.

McGilton says a traffic plan has been developed to keep one lane of traffic open each way on other portions of Bloor Street during construction.

This is the second part of three-phase project. The first phase between Albert Street and Ritson Road was completed in 2015, while the third phase will take place between Ritson Road and Wilson Street.

McGilton didn’t give the specific cost of the second phase, but the overall amount budgeted for the project is $12 million.

Paquette said once the watermain construction project is completed, the region must wait for the two-year warranty period to expire before beginning any road rehabilitation or restoration work.

“This will allow time for any settlement to occur and be addressed by the contractor who did the watermain work,” Paquette said. “The road rehabilitation work is anticipated for the year 2020 and includes the one kilometre length from Cubert Street to Merritt Street.”