City of Ottawa to study potential Barrhaven LRT expansion

LRT

With plans for the second phase of the LRT already a go, the City of Ottawa is now studying ways to extend light rail to Barrhaven.

In a news release Tuesday afternoon, the city said it’s looking at how to “convert bus rapid transit to light-rail transit” in the south-end community. The city said an environmental assessment for the project is being combined with another study already under way for rail grade separations in Barrhaven.

The study will “determine how best to extend the O-Train Confederation Line 10 kilometres south from Baseline Station to Barrhaven Town Centre” with eight stations, the news release said. The project would be built in stages and would include facilities such as a maintenance and storage area, park-and-ride lots and pedestrian infrastructure.

Conducting an environmental assessment now will allow the city to “seek funding from other levels of government as soon as the next round of infrastructure funding programs are announced,” the release added.

The study will also look at constructing rail overpasses at Woodroffe Avenue, the southwest Transitway and Fallowfield Road in an effort to increase safety at those crossings, the city said.

The city’s transportation committee is slated to receive a report on the joint assessment at its next meeting on Oct. 3. The release said city staff will likely make recommendations to the committee based on the study some time in 2020.

The first phase of Ottawa’s $2.1-billion Confederation Line, stretching 12.5 kilometres from Tunney’s Pasture to Blair Station, is now scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2019. Phase two, which will extend the line another 44 kilometres to Moodie Drive in the west end and Trim Road in the east, is expected to be completed in 2023 at an additional cost of about $3 billion.