City Councillor sounding alarm over Elgin Street lane reductions

An Ottawa City Councillor is sounding the alarm about Elgin Street construction and the impact on traffic.

Tim Tierney shot a video Wednesday, witnessing how narrow the road is during construction.

The video shows an OC Transpo bus driver getting out of the bus in the middle of his route to ask a Brinks truck driver to get out of the way. He apparently couldn’t pass because the road was so narrow.

Tierney says the driver tried honking- but to no avail.

Tierney says, “he took care of that situation, but at the end of the day if you have three or four buses where they have to get off their buses, tell cars to advance that’s not satisfying our public ridership.”

Since March, Elgin has been undergoing massive lane reductions and detours as Bell Canada and Hydro Ottawa work on utility infrastructure underground.

“We are already seeing congestion issues. We are seeing people not being able to get through on public transportation, so they got to put a lot of work into this to make sure over the next two years that it is seamless and we have traffic flow,” says Tierney.

The construction is the first stage of a massive two year project. It involves the redesign and renewal of Elgin, revamping the roadway, sidewalks, transit facilities, lighting, and sewers among other things.

The final project will see the street reduced from four lanes to two. Tierney is concerned this will cause problems for public transit and emergency vehicles.

“This is the future of Elgin street it going from four lanes to two in many spots and we are seeing the fall out of that now,” he says. “I am hoping staff can figure a solution around it, so that traffic continues to flow especially for public transit, emergency vehicles all things that I am concerned about.”