Westboro residents get relief from noisy steel bridge used by OC Transpo buses

It was a weekend of progress for Westboro residents who have been dealing with a noisy steel bridge travelled on by OC Transpo buses as they got some much-anticipated relief.

What was once a significantly disruptive sound is now more of a subdued disturbance.

"When it started out it was so loud; it was like a bomb, just went boom, it was terrible," said Stuart Purcey.

Purcey lives just steps away from the temporary Roosevelt bus bridge in Westboro. It's being used while a stretch of the Transitway closes for construction on Stage 2 of the light rail transit project.

The noise was so bad when the bridge went into operation last week; the city had to make some changes.

"It doesn't seem as loud, and yesterday I noticed they had some sort of people up there doing stuff and I wonder if they're just trying to make it more even," Purcey said.

"I thought, 'Boy, this is noisy' and it's a bit up and down," added Angela McKay, who also lives nearby.

McKay rode the bus when the bridge first opened.

"It was just wall to wall buses. It was horrible for those on the bus, pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists, it was a real jam, and I thought I hope they fix this soon," she said.

"The Stage 2 team evaluated and made modifications to the bridge and continue to monitor the noise caused by buses entering and exiting the bridge,”  said the City’s Director of Rail Construction Program, Michael Morgan, in a statement to CTV News Ottawa last Thursday.

The buses are now detouring around the bridge overnight. Residents say it appears the buses are now travelling slower over the bridge during the day.

"Oh yes, they're going much slower, but this is not rush hour, this is Sunday so the bus traffic is not heavy," said McKay.

Area councillor Jeff Leiper said the overnight detour would end Monday, with further work and improvements expected as well.

Residents are hoping it will be a permanent fix as LRT construction is far from over.