Buff and polish to smooth highway 174 commute

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Ottawa Citizen

Written by Neco Cockburn for the Ottawa Citizen 

‘Interim measures’ will improve road

City crews are to smooth a section of Highway 174 this month as a temporary solution to the road’s poor condition.

Workers are to grind down humps and seal cracks in the highway between Montreal Road and an area east of the split with Highway 417 as “interim measures” aimed at improving the road, city staff say.

Staff have said the road likely needs an expensive and challen-ging renewal in order to properly fix bumps caused by the way it was built. Inside lanes of the highway run over a concrete base, which has moved at several joints.

Officials are working on a longerterm solution to the road’s woes, and an engineering report is expected this fall, said Cumberland Councillor Stephen Blais.

The interim repairs are expected to cost about $100,000, depending on what is found when workers shave the humps, Blais said. The temporary work is to be done during evenings and weekends in order to minimize the impact on traffic, according to staff.

Blais said he and other east-side councillors have raised the road as a “community priority” during prebudget discussions with Mayor Jim Watson. The poor state of the road has led to calls from east-side councillors for the province to take back responsibility for the highway, which was downloaded to the city in 1997.

Ottawa-Orléans Liberal MPP Phil McNeely has said there’s little possibility that the province would look at uploading the road, noting that it already negotiated an agreement with municipalities for taking back certain costs and responsibilities handed to cities in the 1990s.