After break, work resumes on Dundas Place flex street
Published Monday, March 18, 2019 5:25PM EDT
Phase two of London's first flex street is underway. After a three-month layoff, work on the next steps for Dundas Place has resumed.
City staff say phase two will present new set of challenges.
During the first phase of construction, the stretch of Dundas Street between Talbot Street and Ridout Street North, primary contained large buildings.
Jim Yanchula, manager of Downtown Projects, says service connections for Budweiser Gardens, the London Courthouse and the Bell building were relatively straightforward.
But Yanchula says it’s a different story on the two blocks of Dundas from Richmond Street to Wellington Street.
“When you have many small properties and each of them need to be connected to the city services under the road then that makes for more complicated work.”
Yanchula says work on phase two could have started earlier, but the plan all along was to wait until Junos Week was complete. With the awards show wrapped up on Sunday, work got underway around 7 a.m. Monday.
As was the case with phase one, pedestrians can move along Dundas and businesses are open, but cars and bikes will have to find another route.
Heroes Comics had customers coming through the door first thing in the morning, but also faced its first challenge.
Owner Brahm Wiseman says boxes of new comics and collectibles had to come through the back door and down a narrow set of stairs, "It is going to be a hassle, but it's all going to be worth it in the long run."
And Wiseman says they’ve already begun thinking about how they will handle Free Comic Book Day in May. It’s an event which attracts large crowds, with people dressed as their favorite comic book characters.
The store is likely going to use a parking lot at the rear of the store for the this year’s event, "It just won't be right in front of the store, the street won't accommodate it this year. But next year, the new flex street will accommodate it really, really well."
Yanchula says that, while the flex street is a nice addition, improvements being made underground were vital. But he says old sewer and water pipes make the project more challenging.
"We're trying to improve 19th century infrastructure for the 21st century. So, it's complicated when you don't have everything mapped or, even when it is mapped underground, you don't know if it's right."
The total cost of the flex street work is expected to come in at about $16 million.