Mountain Road Upgrades In The Works

This portion of Mountain Road will be widened to five lanes to the 10th Line.

A plan is in place to begin long awaited and much needed upgrades to Mountain Road. Collingwood Council heard from Tom Nolert and Patrick Wojcieszynski from the Ainley Group at its regular meeting on Monday June 11th.

“A good percentage of this program will be funded through development charges.”
Brian MacDonald, Town of Collingwood Director of Public Works and Engineering

Mr. Nolert stated what we all have known for quite some time. Road and intersection improvements are necessary to accommodate future growth along Mountain Road. A number of developments are now in place, are currently under construction or are in the planning stages, and when complete, an updated Mountain Road will be necessary to handle the increased vehicle and pedestrian traffic.

He said the plan has progressed to the point where it is time to proceed to the second public information centre. The first information session attracted approximately 30 people and was held in June, 2017, were options, concerns and issues were discussed with the public.

The Mountain Road study area is approximately 1.3 kilometres in length and goes from Cambridge Street to the 10th Line. The 10th Line study is approximately 1.2 kilometres in length and takes in the roadway between Mountain Road and 6th Street.

When fully developed, approximately 25,000 vehicles per day will be travelling along Mountain Road

Nolert said that when fully developed, the residential neighbourhoods will consist of approximately 2,240 units. In addition, commercial developments will be constructed along Mountain Road.

“When this area is fully developed we expect that in conjunction with the developments as well as the growth and existing background traffic, we’ll have approximately 25,000 vehicles per day travelling along Mountain Road, and approximately 11,000 vehicles travelling per day along the 10th Line.”

The plan is to widen Mountain Road to five lanes up to the 10th Line, including turning lanes.

The current 2 lane bridge on Mountain Road will be widened with improved access to the trail system

Mr. Nolert said the Mountain Road improvements will allow the Town to include bike lanes, make improvements to the multi-use trail, allow for servicing and infrastructure upgrades, provide sidewalks and improve the trail crossing at what will be an expanded bridge over Black Ash Creek.

The south side of Mountain Road would include a 3 metre multi-use pedestrian pathway.

Councillor Mike Edwards said that only a small section of Mountain Road is included in the planned upgrade at this time. He wondered when the scope would be expanded to deal with all of the busy roadway.

“There’s a tremendous amount of traffic already and there’s going to be an increase and so my question really is are you aware of any plans that are going on, not just to extend it into Collingwood’s section but also the Blue Mountains, because there is a tremendous amount of residential activity going on there.”
Edwards also asked about the funding model for an upgrade to Mountain Road.

Town of Collingwood Director of Public Works and Engineering, Brian MacDonald, told Council that the Town needs to be ready when the need for funding presents itself.

“In terms of funding, it is part of our development charges study. A good percentage of this program will be funded through development charges. The only challenge we’ll have is that development has to happen in order for us to get that funding. We have to be ready in advance of that and I have been working with Marjorie (Marjorie Leonard, Town of Collingwood Treasurer) on thatand we will not come to Council without a business plan in terms of moving forward with our capital program.”

MacDonald said the Town is aware that Mountain Road services the Blue Mountains where extensive residential development continues along with traffic moving through Collingwood to head to Blue Mountain Resort.

“Certainly a part of our transportation studies have included not only the development you saw in here (in Collingwood’s west end) but also development growth in the area which includes what is happening in the Blue Mountains.”

MacDonald said the Town is looking at the first section of Mountain Road at the moment because it is a part of Collingwood’s plan.

“Certainly at some point in time in the future we will be back to Council probably with another study that looks at the next portion of road from the 10th Line out to the border, but that is a different type of road. Certainly the pressures of that road are different than this particular road and our transportation study did not suggest that this was warranted at this time.

Tom Nolert said his firm did look at neighbouring transportation plans while it planned for in-town upgrades to Mountain Road.

“We did look at both the Grey County Transportation Plan as well as the Town of the Blue Mountains Transportation Plan to establish, if you will, what would the existing growth and background traffic be even if these developments did not proceed. So we look at that as a background growth over that time period and then add our developments on top of that.”

The five lane plan for Mountain Road will feature turning lanes, a paved multi-use trail and sidewalks.

The two lane planned upgrade of the 10th Line will include sidewalks to service new residential developments

The report recommends the creation of a roundabout at the intersection of Mountain Road and the 10th Line. A second roundabout is recommended for the intersection of 6th Street and the 10th Line.

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