Project Status

The City of Toronto and Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) have completed a number of infrastructure upgrades on Queen Street West (Bay Street to Fennings Street), which include:

  • Replacement of streetcar track from Bay Street to Fennings Street
  • Replacement of streetcar track at the intersection of Queen Street West and Shaw Street
  • Replacement of watermain and City-owned portion of substandard water services from Bay Street to University Avenue

Originally planned for 2021, streetscape improvement work in partnership with the Queen Street West Business Improvement Area (BIA) will be completed in 2022.

Completed Work

Phase 1 – West of Bay Street to York Street (completed)

Crews have replaced top layer of TTC track, 100+ year old watermain and substandard water service connections. The track at the Queen and York intersection was not replaced.

Phase 2 – York Street to Queen Street West and University Avenue intersection (completed)

Crews have replaced the top layer TTC track, the 100+ year old watermain and substandard water service connections. A short section (east University Avenue) also had full depth track excavation.

Phase 2A – West of University Avenue to Simcoe Street (completed)

Crews have replaced the top layer of TTC track and several overhead poles along south sidewalk. Crews also replaced the 100+ year old watermain and substandard water service connections.

Phase 3 – East of Simcoe Street to Duncan Street (completed)

Crews have replaced the top layer of TTC track and some overhead poles along south sidewalk.

Phase 4 – West of McCaul Street to Spadina Avenue (completed)

Crews have replaced the top layer of TTC track and some overhead poles along south sidewalk (the track at the Queen and McCaul and Queen/Spadina intersections were not be replaced).

Crews will return to undertake Queen Street West BIA streetscape improvement work.

Phase 5 – Bathurst Street to Spadina Avenue (completed)

Crews have replaced the top layer of TTC track. Crews will return to undertake Queen Street West BIA streetscape improvement work.

Phase 6 – Niagara Street to Bathurst Street (completed)

Crews replaced the top layer of TTC track. The track at the Queen and Bathurst intersection will not be replaced).

Phase 5A – Queen Street West and Shaw Street intersection (completed)

Crews replaced the full depth of TTC track at intersection. Read the TTC Construction Notice.

Phase 7 – East of Shaw Street to Niagara Street (completed)

Crews replaced the top layer of TTC track from Strachan Avenue to Gore Vale Avenue.

Phase 8 – East of Fennings Street to Shaw Street (completed)

Crews replaced the top layer of TTC track from (west of) Ossington Avenue to Fennings Street.

While active construction takes place you may experience dust, noise, vibrations and other inconveniences. The City will make efforts to reduce the impacts. We appreciate your patience.

Communication with Contractors

There are times when contractors need to communicate with homeowners about what is happening in the work area. This could be about driveway access, exterior pre-construction inspections, CaféTO and site restoration work. Contractor’s staff are identifiable by high-visibility clothing.

Where possible, a phone number for a contact person on-site will be provided on notices, to answer questions about work near your property. At other times, the contractor may knock on your door, but will then step away the required distance to discuss the work that is taking place and what can be expected that day. Please practice physical distancing with workers so everyone can remain safe. If you have questions, call the contact provided on this notice.

City-led infrastructure construction has been deemed essential to ensure the City’s infrastructure remain safe, in a state of good repair and able to meet Toronto’s needs. Learn about the City’s response to COVID-19.

Work Hours

Work on this project will take place 24 hours a day seven days a week. Excavation activities and heavy breaking will be carried out at various times throughout the day.

Concrete breaking activities mainly will occur between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. Overnight will occur.

Concrete breaking work is the most disruptive and will typically take place during the first two to three days for each phase of the construction.

There will be periods of 24 hour operations (overnight activities) by TTC crews during new rail installation. Around-the-clock work during rail installation is required to preserve the integrity and quality of new rail, concrete and to support the progress of the daytime activity. Overnight rail work by TTC may consist of moving new rail into position, rail installation and rail welding/grinding.

Property Access

The City-hired contractor may need access to the interior and exterior of your home to complete a pre-construction condition survey. Affected properties will receive a request to schedule a time to complete the pre-construction condition survey. Although participation is voluntary, the pre-construction survey results may be useful to confirm claims for potential damage caused by City construction.

Accessibility

In order to complete the work in a safe manner, there will be road and sidewalk restrictions within the construction work zone. Access for emergency vehicles will be maintained at all times.

The City’s contractor must ensure safe and accessible walkways and entryways are maintained for everyone during construction. Any temporary access disruptions will be communicated as soon as possible. If you experience a disruption, have a specific access need or related accommodation request, please contact the Public Consultation Unit listed on the right hand side of this page.

Traffic Management

Efforts are being made to manage traffic in the area for the safety of workers, road users and residents. People driving and cycling will not have access to the active work zone. Sidewalks will generally be open. As such, people cycling can dismount and use available sidewalks. Additional traffic management information will be communicated as it becomes available. Road users should expect delays and increased traffic on nearby main and side streets.

To ensure everyone’s safety, Paid Duty Officers (PDOs) and/or Traffic Agents will be deployed at the intersections on both ends of the active work zone

Parking

Parking will not be available within the active work zone. Pay and display on-street parking will be available east and west of each active work zone, where applicable. When work is taking place in your area, please direct your customers and visitors to park in the following Green P lots:

Parking Violation Notice

In an effort to reduce ticketing due to construction, the City encourages communities with construction to be patient as neighbours may need to temporarily relocate vehicles. If parking enforcement is called to a street, officers must issue a yellow parking violation notice (ticket) to vehicles in violation of parking by-laws. If you receive a yellow notice during this construction work, do the following within 15 days of the notice date:

  • Dispute the parking violation notice online or in person following the process listed on the back of the parking violation notice.

You may use the construction notice as part of the explanation of why the violation should be cancelled.

Violation notices cannot be cancelled if vehicles are parked in illegal parking spots (i.e. in front of a fire hydrant or in no parking zones).

Garbage & Recycling

The City’s contractor is responsible for ensuring garbage, recycling and green bins are picked up for collection on Thursdays (Bathurst to Fennings) and Mondays (Bathurst to Bay) while working on your section of Queen Street West.

The City’s contractor will roll the bins to the nearest corner from your property and will bring them back once emptied to the front of your property the following morning.

Please follow these steps:

  1. Label all bins with your address
  2. Place your bins in front of your property, by the construction fencing by 5:00 p.m. on your usual collection day – east of Bathurst on ‘Mondays’ and west of Bathurst on ‘Thursdays’
  3. If your bins are not picked up by the City’s contractor, or if you missed placing them in front of your property, please call 311 and mention the ongoing City construction.

If you do not get your waste collected by the City, please immediately coordinate with your waste collection company to collect at an alternate nearby location, or contact us for assistance at: queenwestconstruction@toronto.ca

Restoration

The construction work area will be restored with asphalt where required in future stages of the work. Updates will be provided.

The final section of the rolling work zones along Queen Street West during this track project was reopened on January 6, 2022, coinciding with the completion of the project. 501/301 Queen buses have resumed regular service on Queen Street West. Prior to January 6, Queen Replacement buses were diverting around the work zone both ways via Queen Street, Bathurst Street, King Street West and Dufferin Street.

TTC streetcar overhead upgrade work continues on the Queen streetcar route requiring streetcars to divert. Additionally, City/TTC infrastructure work continues at the King/Queen/Queensway/Roncesvalles (KQQR) intersection requiring 501 Queen Replacement bus service to operate.

Map displays the current 501 Queen service diversion from Victoria Park to Bathurst. The diversion route will take place along King St. Please contact Michael Vieira for more information at Michael.Vieira3@toronto.ca

Visit ttc.ca for accurate schedule information.

Background and Scope of Work

In 2019, the City released a Request for Proposals (RFP) to solicit a Landscape Architectural Team of Consultants to lead the Queen Street West Phase 2 Streetscape Revitalization project from Spadina Avenue to Simcoe Street. PMA Landscape Architects was selected as the prime consultant, with a fulsome team of specialists including artists Scott Eunson and Jyhling Lee (figureground studio), structural engineer Blackwell Engineers, and electrical consultant MJS Consultants. As part of a separate RFP, artists Catherine Tammaro and Mairi Brascoupé were selected to incorporate Indigenous placekeeping installations.

The overall scope of work included the conceptual design through to construction documentation and construction management support of streetscape features. This design process included workshops and meetings with selected members of the Queen Street West BIA Board, as well as presentations to the Board – to review and vet design proposals. The design process occurred from February of 2020 to March of 2021 with regular monthly to bi-monthly meetings.

Vision and Design Goals

Similar to the Phase 1 project, the project goals from the outset were about several key ambitions:

  • Placemaking – celebrating the street’s character with artistic and functional interventions, referencing cultural heritage
  • Site-Wide Public Art – continuing to support and implement public art by multiple local artists and celebrate Queen West’s eccentric identity of being “the same, but different”
  • Extending the Public Realm – create interventions that are engaging and encourage curiosity, lingering and interaction; physically expand the public realm where possible via sidewalk expansions and “bumpouts”; maximize pedestrian flow and circulation
  • Highlight Neighbourhood Connections – enhance physical and visual connections both north-south and east-west beyond, to draw people to Queen West

Through the facilitation process the vision and approach to the streetscape design were refined to the following Vision Statements:

  • Hear and be Heard
  • See and be Seen
  • Recognize the Past and Grow in the Present

All further design development and solutions would be measured against these vision statements and goals.

Design Features

A collection of public art and custom furnishings were developed that would have one or all of these characterizing qualities: Eclectic, Surprising, Reflective, Resilient and Flexible.  The features would have a robustness and durability that would minimize ongoing maintenance, but also serve as artful engaging placemakers and landmarks along Queen Street West.

The following features were developed as part of the project:

Sculpture

As a response to the Vision Statement of being able to ‘see and be seen’, artist Jyhling Lee developed a significant landmark sculpture that will reside at the northwest corner of Queen Street West and Soho Street, adjacent to the current MEC building.

The sculpture and inhabitable environment that amplifies the energy and dynamism of this stretch of Queen Street West as a place to see and be seen. The artwork captures and kaleidoscopically reflects this ever-changing environment both around and within its faceted mirror form.

Custom Seating

PMA developed a series of custom flexible seating that would provide short perching, comfortable accessible seating and socializing in small groups. This ‘ribbon’ of furnishings would reference some of the angular geometries from the Reflektor sculpture but also instill some colour and functional seating in the wider sidewalk block from Spadina Avenue to Soho Street.

Tree Fences

Continuing from Phase 1, artist Scott Eunson developed an updated and contextually appropriate design for the tree guards that draw inspiration and reference the heritage architecture cues of the store facades interpreting them into an abstracted city-scape that would wrap around the base of existing trees.

Bike Corral

As part of the City and BIA’s support of cycling in the City, an expanded sidewalk close to the Soho Street intersection is going to form the base of a new bike corral composed of a series of 10 custom bike rings designed by artist Scott Eunson.

Historical Lot Line Markers

To continue and complete the heritage mapping started in the Phase 1 project, artist Scott Eunson has designed a series of bronze inlays that will be demonstrative of early colonial habitation taken from a map from 1827.

Clan Markers – Bronze Inlays

Wyandot artist Catherine Tammaro was selected to design interpretive artful features that would reflect the continual presence of Indigenous Peoples on this land. She is working in consultation with community members, to design what she refers to as “Energetic Signatures” or “Clan Markers” which are culturally resonant signs of Indigenous Peoples’ kinship groups. The Markers will become “powerful connecting points for our beautiful reciprocity with the Natural World…” located rhythmically, close to Mother Earth, they reflect “sound songs”, throughout. She will present symbols from each of the clans of the Wendat, the Haudenosaunee and the Anishinaabeg, and kinship markers for Cree and Métis Peoples. Catherine has said she is deeply honoured to be doing this sacred work.

Indigenous Sidewalk Mural

Anishinabeg artist Mairi Brascoupé was selected to prepare the design for the sidewalk mural. The site is within the northern sidewalk stretch east of Soho Street, continuing the legacy of the popular sidewalk mural installations that has existed on Queen Street West for decades. Her work subject matter focuses on land and place, plants that are related to the territory, mapping of important waterways and other expressions of Indigenous placekeeping.

The final result is a curated collection of public art and custom furniture that seeks to continue Queen West’s legacy as a culturally rich, artful and engaging place to be, to accelerate growth in the area and contribute to much needed public realm respite and socializing.

During construction, notification is provided to inform local residents and businesses of temporary disruptions to local roads and traffic. Residents and businesses are encouraged to sign-up for email updates to be issued once construction begins.


Sign-up for Email Updates

Given the fast pace of this project, it is recommended that you sign up for weekly updates. Your contact information will be kept private and will only be used to share information about this project.

Throughout construction the City has worked actively to keep local community members and businesses informed and involved in project stages.

Email:

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