Windsor Street Exchange facelift could cost $40-50-million, construction to start in 2024

Click to play video: 'Facelift to come for Windsor Street Exchange' Facelift to come for Windsor Street Exchange
WATCH: A major intersection in Halifax is getting a facelift. The Windsor Street Exchange is described by some as a bottleneck, while others avoid it entirely. HRM estimates the problem could get worse, with traffic potentially doubling in the next 30 years. Callum Smith reports – Nov 19, 2021

Some people don’t dare use the Windsor Street Exchange in Halifax, a major intersection connecting the Bedford Highway, Windsor Street and Lady Hammond Road.

“My experiences with the Windsor Street Exchange have always been unpleasant,” said a person who identified themselves as Dinny from a nearby grocery store parking lot.

“I find the design frightening, so I definitely avoid it at all costs.”

With that in mind, she was excited to hear the Halifax Regional Municipality is going forward with a major redevelopment project to help address some concerns.

“This has been a bottleneck in the transportation network for a number of years,” says Megan Soroka, the project manager for the city.

The problems are projected to get worse. There are currently 48,000 vehicles using the area daily, but that volume could double over the next 30 years, Soroka says.

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“Fairview, Clayton Park, Bedford are some of the fastest-growing communities,” she says.

Read more: The HRM wants your opinion on how to fix the Windsor Street exchange

A public consultation session on two main options for the redesign has just closed, but a third session will happen in the future when the city has narrowed down its “preferred choice,” Soroka says.

Construction and design could cost about $40-50-million, though costing details will come when more decisions are made.

“Both options have an overpass that connects the Bedford Highway to the MacKay Bridge,” Soroka says.

Option A looks at using two roundabouts to move people to the surrounding road network and option B uses a series of signalized intersections and some more connections to the existing road network.”

There will also be a multi-use path for active transportation.

“I consider myself a pretty confident cyclist. I ride right out in traffic, but the Windsor Street Exchange? No way,” says Johann Gambol, a cyclist on the peninsula for over 30 years.

“It’s a good way to get killed.”

Read more: Halifax launches Cogswell District project, but end date far down the road

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He doesn’t have many complaints when he’s in a vehicle, other than “traffic in there.”

Gambol also has concerns about the left turn coming from Windsor Street onto the Bedford Highway “where the two lanes merge into one.”

“We don’t know what construction impacts will be yet, but we’re expecting the construction will take two to three years and we’re planning on beginning in 2024,” says Soroka.

More details on how construction will impact travellers will come out as the project continues.


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