Graded rail crossings in Barrhaven to cost $430 million: report

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson says he would seek help from the federal government to cover costs of a proposed to plan to put in separated rail crossings in south Ottawa.

It would cost $430 million to put in separated rail crossings at five locations: Woodroffe Avenue, the Transitway, Fallowfield Road, Merivale Road, and Jockvale Road.

The price tag for the proposed project - the Barrhaven Safety Rail Program - was released in a report Wednesday.

The study looking at rail crossings was prompted by the deadly 2013 crash between an OC Transpo bus and a VIA rail train in Barrhaven that claimed six lives.

The study suggests that overpasses be built at the Woodroffe, Fallowfield, and Transitway crossings, due to the soil and hydroecological conditions in those areas. Underpasses are proposed for the Jockvale and Merivale crossings.

“We’ll be looking to [the federal government] to help us with this,” Watson told reporters Wednesday. “It’s just something we believe a) we can’t afford and b) railways do fall under the jurisdiction of the federal government and not the City.”

The report suggests the City may also seek funding help from the Province and from Via Rail.

The issue will go to Transportation Committee next week.