Fifth-Clegg Footbridge Construction: What to Know, How to Prepare for Detours

By Miranda Brethour

Construction is finally set to move forward on the much-anticipated Fifth-Clegg footbridge. With the funding now in place, crews will start on the Glebe side around mid-September and will turn to the Old Ottawa East side by mid-October.

To help pedestrians, bikes, and cars travel along Colonel By Drive and Queen Elizabeth Driveway during construction, detours will be put in place, which may impact the commute if the canal is residents’ route of choice.

The detour through OOE will start in November. The city’s website outlines this detour as consisting of, “A clearly signed pathway detour … between Clegg Street and Herridge Street with a signalized crossing at Herridge Street to return to the pathway along the Canal.” Detours will remain in place until Labour Day 2019.

Detours on the Glebe side will begin the week of September 18 with a signed and paved pathway between Third Avenue and Fifth Avenue along Queen Elizabeth Driveway.

Graphic by: City of Ottawa

Graphic by: City of Ottawa

Despite the construction and related detours, one OOE resident remains enthusiastic about the bridge. “I’m excited for the bridge,” a resident living in close proximity to the detours remarked. “The access to the Glebe will open up a lot of possibilities.”

Another resident, Cynthia Dwyer, voiced a similar optimism. “As far as I can tell there will be minimal effect to me, I just have to take a small detour and the benefit of finally having the bridge easily outweighs it.” Rather than the detours, Dwyer expressed cautious concern about the potential noise pollution resulting from the construction process itself.

In addition to the detours, construction will also slightly increase the number of trees along both sides of the canal. The city’s Project Manager Richard Moore said there will be 63 new trees planted, 16 relocated and 59 removed. Requirements for construction include that the large oak tree at Clegg Street will be protected and preserved.

Trees on the west side of the canal which interfere with the installation of trailers and fencing will be removed. The remaining trees will be removed in November and new trees planted in 2019.

Despite these upcoming changes, skating and boating enthusiasts need not fret. The city has confirmed that it does not expect construction to impact the accessibility of the Rideau Canal for skating or boating.

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Filed in: Features, FP, Front Page

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