Prepare for detour as John Counter Boulevard overpass is completed

The rail overpass on John Counter Boulevard, which is currently in its final phase of construction. Photo by First Response Media.

Residents in Kingston will need to adjust to a new detour as John Counter Boulevard will be closed to allow for the completion of the rail overpass.

Kingston City Council first approved the concept for the construction of the overpass in 2015, and construction has been underway since then. Now, as the project enters its final phase towards completion, commuters will need to prepare for the closure of a section of John Counter Boulevard and a subsequent detour being put in place.

Beginning on Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020, John Counter Boulevard will be closed from Sir John A. Macdonald Boulevard to Princess Street to allow for the completion of work on the rail overpass and nearby intersections. According to the City of Kingston, this closure will allow crews to:

  • Remove the crane pads that have been used for construction
  • Complete the final layer of asphalt, remaining concrete curbs, and sidewalks
  • Complete line painting and the installation of new traffic signals and streetlights
  • Make a new water main connection between Portsmouth Road and Old Mill Road

The detour

Both John Counter Boulevard and Portsmouth Avenue will be open to local traffic only, and local businesses will remain open, the City of Kingston reported on Monday, Aug. 31, 2020. Drivers should prepare to take the following detour routes:

  • From the east: Go south on Princess Street and turn north on Sir John A. Macdonald Boulevard
  • From the west: Go south on Sir John A. Macdonald Boulevard and turn north on Princess Street
John Counter Boulevard detour map via the City of Kingston.

The City reports that the expansion project is progressing well.

“The project is progressing well, and we’ve benefitted from some early supply deliveries over the course of the summer,” said Rob Lambert, Project Manager of the John Counter Boulevard Expansion Project for the City of Kingston. “We’re thrilled to be at this stage, and we appreciate commuters’ patience as we get the overpass ready to open.”

When the road reopens, the overpass will be open and fully functional, allowing for improved transportation for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers by “eliminating traffic delays caused by trains and providing much-needed active transportation infrastructure, creating a safer, more connected route,” the City of Kingston said.

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