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Niagara-on-the-Lake
Sunday, October 2, 2022
Redesigned Glendale interchange will soon be open to traffic
Work is nearing completion on the QEW's new diverging diamond interchange at Glendale Road.
Work is nearing completion on the QEW's new diverging diamond interchange at Glendale Road. Evan Loree

Steve Hardaker
Community Correspondent

After two and a half years of construction to completely redesign the QEW/Glendale Avenue  interchange, drivers can expect to soon start using the new road, the province says.

“We’re building the first-ever diverging diamond interchange in Ontario,” said transportation ministry spokesperson Reena Dar.

The new interchange “will improve the flow of traffic and reduce gridlock,” she said in an emailed statement.

The $53.8 million diverging diamond interchange, built in partnership among the Ministry of Transportation, Region of Niagara and Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake will give drivers a whole new experience.

It is expected to be fully operational by Sept. 16.

On a diverging diamond road, traffic on a minor street, in this case Glendale Avenue,  diverges to the left side of the road through two crossover intersections, the region says on its website.

This enables left-turning traffic to access the QEW without waiting for signals or crossing other traffic. The result is improved function of the interchange functionality and fewer “conflict points” for traffic, the region says.

“It will eliminate the need for left-hand turns by using a series of interconnected crossover lanes controlled by traffic lights and highway signage that can be easily understood by road users,” Dar said.

Two in-person public education sessions are planned for Wednesday, Sept. 7, to provide information on how to navigate the new exit.

The first session is from 2 to 4 p.m. and the second is 5 to 7 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn on York Road near the new interchange.

Opening the new exit will require a full closure of Glendale Avenue from 10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 16, to 5 a.m. Monday, Sept. 19, to switch traffic from the existing Glendale Road bridge to the diverging diamond.

Dar noted a diverging diamond interchange “provides easier access and flow for traffic, cyclists, and pedestrians. This interchange design will reduce the number of vehicle conflict points and allow unrestricted access to the QEW.”

Within the existing interchange, there are 28 vehicle conflict points. The new road will reduce that by half.

A YouTube video of the diverging diamond interchange on I-40 in Oklahoma provides a good simulation of what to expect when travelling through the new QEW/Glendale Avenue interchange.

See the video at youtu.be/HD-0QnUlLOQ.

Once the new interchange opens, the contractors will demolish the existing Glendale Avenue bridge, construct a new carpool lot and complete the Airport Road loop ramp under Glendale Avenue.

All that work should be completed by the end of October 2022.

Between then and June 2023, rehabilitation work will commence on the existing QEW pavement.

The project will end in June 2023 with the construction of a roundabout at Glendale Avenue and York Road.

Steve Hardaker has lived in Glendale for over 11 years and is active in several community organizations.