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Simcoe, Lviv intersection could fall victim to 401 bridge replacement

MTO, city staff disagree on proposed cul-de-sac to replace current alignment of Lviv Boulevard

This image shows the possible future alignment of Lviv Boulevard. The Ministry of Transportation has told the city the intersection of Simcoe and Lviv would be removed under its current plans to replace the Simcoe Street bridge crossing Highway 401.

By Dave Flaherty/The Oshawa Express

City council has made its choice of how it would like Lviv Boulevard to be configured after the replacement of the Simcoe and Albert Street bridges over the 401.

Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has plans to remove the current bridges with wider replacements.

According to a staff report, the intersection of Simcoe and Lviv was intended to remain, but the detail design process of the MTO’s project has determined this is unfeasible.

“As a result, the project will now include longer and wider crossings at Simcoe Street South and Albert Street, which can facilitate a wider highway with more lanes and improved acceleration and deceleration lanes at the expense of an intersection at Simcoe Street and Lviv Boulevard,” reads the report written by commissioner of development services Warren Munro.

According to Munro’s report, the demands of the bridge replacement project would see a totally new Lviv Boulevard.

Under the MTO’s current plan, the length of the boulevard west of Albert Street would be cut in half, with a cul-de-sac added at the west side.

The province is planning to construct a retaining wall along the current south side of Lviv Boulevard.

Munro’s report indicates construction of this wall would require full excavation of the roadway, and it would then be reconstructed with the cul-de-sac.

If the project moves forward, the MTO would assume ownership of Lviv Boulevard during the construction, and there would be access for traffic during construction.

This portion of the road would then be returned to the city.

There are three buildings on the road, two single-detached dwellings and a two-storey hall including the Ukrainian Lviv Pavilion and Ukrainian Heritage Centre.

These buildings are associated with St. George’s Ukrainian Catholic Church.

Munro stated in his report church representatives have no interest in acquiring the road allowance after construction due to potential costs associated with maintenance and insurance.

While city staff are in agreement with the plan for a cul-de-sac, Munro told The Oshawa Express he disagrees with how far the ministry wants the new boulevard to run.

To him, it would be best to have the cul-de-sac closer to the last building on the street.

Under the MTO’s current design, there would be greater costs for the municipality, he adds.

According to Munro, staff asked the    ministry for the cul-de-sac be 13 metres in width, but the proposal was rejected.

In his report to council, Munro estimated, under the city’s plan, the anticipated capital costs to maintain Lviv Boulevard would be $320,000.

He said this is more than half of the estimated costs under the MTO’s design.

According to Munro, annual maintenance costs (i.e. sidewalks, curbs, and gutters) would also decrease from $3,000 to $1,500 under the city’s preferred design.