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Tearing down Gardiner ramp major part of summer construction season

Last Updated Apr 17, 2017 at 12:12 pm EDT

Cars are back up on the Gardiner Expressway on May 23, 2014. CITYNEWS

After what seemed like a never-ending winter, warmer weather has arrived in Toronto and with it comes construction season.

Public Works Chair Jaye Robinson unveiled the city’s list of construction projects for the this season on Monday morning.

One of the major projects will be tearing down the existing ramp from the eastbound Gardiner Expressway to York, Bay and Yonge streets and replacing it with a shorter ramp to Lower Simcoe Street.

Harbour Street, from Lower Simcoe to Bay streets, will also be widened to four lanes from three, to accommodate traffic flow in the area.

The ramp will be closed to motorists starting on April 17 and construction won’t wrap up until next January.

“This is a big undertaking, again one of our biggest. It will be disruptive, there is no doubt, but the Gardiner is crumbling and we need to address it. So this is a big step forward,” Robinson said at a news conference at Mill and Cherry streets.

Some of the other major projects planned this year include:

  • Watermain, streetcar track and road work on Wellington Street from Church to York streets. Drivers will encounter lane restrictions on that stretch of the roadway. The construction is expected to last until September.
  • Bridge rehabilitation on the Queensway Bridge over the Humber River
  • TTC track work at the intersection of Queen Street and McCaul Street
  • Track replacement, watermain work and road resurfacing on Dundas Street from Yonge to Church street
  • Road resurfacing on Birchmount Road from McNicoll Avenue to Steeles Avenue East
  • Road resurfacing and watermain work on Don Mills Road from Lawrence Avenue to Wynford Drive
  • Road resurfacing on Burnhamthorpe Road from Dundas Street West to Martin Grove Road
  • Road resurfacing on Lake Shore Boulevard from Leslie Street to Woodbine Avenue


But there is some good news for drivers. As the city announced earlier this year, the Gardiner Expressway won’t be shutdown for annual maintenance this spring. However, drivers will still have to deal with the upcoming Don Valley Parkway closure.

There will be closures on the Gardiner and the DVP for the Ride for Heart on June 4 and on July 23 for the Toronto Triathlon Festival.

The city is also extending work hours for 32 construction projects, including overnight work at nine spots and 24/7 work at seven other locations.

The unveiling of summertime road construction comes on what could be the warmest day of the year so far.

680 NEWS meteorologist Harold Hosein said it is will be mainly cloudy and windy with a a high of 21 C. On Sunday, the temperature hit 20.3 C at Pearson International Airport.

Rain is expected to make its way into the region after midnight and will continue into Tuesday. The temperature is expected to remain mild at 17 C.

But cooler weather is in store for the rest of the week with temperatures in the low teens.

Clarification: An earlier version of the story said the DVP closure would be on April 24. The closure is from 11 p.m. on April 21 to 5 a.m. on April 24.