The city began reconstruction in 2015 and the plans called for a radical change that reduced vehicle lanes from four to two to make way for dedicated cycling tracks, wider sidewalks and dedicated on-street parking.Although it appears as most of the hard work is done, construction is expected to be “truly" complete by Spring 2017, when landscaping will be added, but the councillor said it will be functional complete by Christmas.
Michelle Nash Baker, Ottawa Community News
Main Street is starting to look pretty good.
The street in Old Ottawa East is undergoing a major transformation and from the looks of things, it is starting to shape up.
As Ottawa's first "complete street” the change has given cyclists and pedestrians the same priority as cars.
The city began reconstruction in 2015 and the plans called for a radical change that reduced vehicle lanes from four to two to make way for dedicated cycling tracks, wider sidewalks and dedicated on-street parking.
Living only steps from the construction chaos, resident and past president of the Ottawa East Community Association John Dance said the result has been worth waiting for.
"The two plus years of dust, noise and expense have been more than worth it,” Dance said. "Now you can safely and pleasantly walk and cycle along Main."
Instead of simply a painted line to mark a cycling lane, the city put raised cycling tracks along Main Street. The tracks are meant to provide more separation between bikes and vehicles. The city is currently installing Ottawa's first cycling tracks on Churchill Avenue. The cycling tracks would run from McIlraith Bridge to Harvey Street in the northbound direction, with sharrow markings completing the cycling connection on Main Street to the canal. From west of the canal and Pretoria Bridge, the proposed cycling connection is to use the counter-directional lane that already exists, of Graham Avenue to bypass Hawthorne Avenue. Treatments for future cycling connections down Clegg are in the plans which will connect the upcoming footbridge over the Rideau Canal at Clegg Street and Fifth Avenue to both Main Street.
Dance said the side benefits from the road construction has also made the community better.
“The restoration of the historic Brantwood Gates war memorial, public art celebrating the community and a beautifully re-landscaped Main Street frontage for Saint Paul University,” he said.