How will the public be involved during the study?
There are a number of ways the public can get involved. These include:
- Contact the Project Team directly. Visit the “Contact Us” page on this website for more details.
- Attend the Public Information Centres. Two (2) Public Information Centres will be held at key milestones to engage the public, and provide an opportunity for two-way communication with the Project Team.
- Visit our pop-up booth that will be set up twice at the Burlington Farmer’s Market.
- Visit this project website. The Project Website will be updated regularly to provide information on events including the Public Information Centres, and availability of project documentation.
Review the Transportation Environmental Study Report (TESR) during the 30-day public review period and provide your comments. The TESR will be released at the end of the study, following the two Public Information Centres.
How with the public be notified of the study and key project milestones?
We will use the following methods to notify the public of key project milestones:
- Letters and notices will be sent to contacts on the project mailing list to solicit comments and suggestions.
- Newspaper notices will be published in the Hamilton Spectator and Burlington Post.
- Notices will be posted on the “Consultation” page of this website.
I would like to join the project mailing list. How do I sign up?
Visit the “Contact Us” page of the project website to fill out a comment form or email the Project Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is a Preliminary Design Study?
A project typically goes through several study phases before it is tendered for construction. The phases are: Planning, Preliminary Design, and Detail Design. Each phase involves an increasing level of detail as the study progresses.
Preliminary Design is a broader study with an end goal of selecting a preferred alternative to address the problem / opportunity. A list of alternatives are generated that would address study objectives. The alternatives are evaluated using a set of criteria along with stakeholder engagement to determine the preferred alternative. Preliminary drawings are developed for the preferred alternative at this stage.
How will the preferred alternative / preferred plan be selected? Do I have a say?
To ensure there is reasonable and adequate justification to proceed with the improvements and that the need for the study is clearly demonstrated, the MTO Class EA process requires that Planning Alternatives be considered. Planning Alternatives are assessed against a set of evaluation criteria such as: ability to reasonably address the identified transportation needs and opportunities, and potential impacts to the natural, socio-economic and cultural environment. The assessment is completed in conjunction with public input.
The evaluation criteria will be presented at PIC #1 while the preferred alternative will be presented at PIC #2. Members of the public are encouraged to attend the PICs, and submit comments to the Project Team about the Planning Alternatives and evaluation criteria.
What is the purpose of this study?
The purpose of the study is to consider improvements to Highway 403 and the QEW, such as:
- Highway widening for additional lanes, which may include High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) / High Occupancy Toll (HOT) and/or general-purpose lanes in the study area;
- A new transitway connection from Aldershot GO Station to the future 407 Transitway;
- A new carpool lot near the Plains/Fairview Interchange; and
- Operational (e.g. drainage, illumination), and structural improvements.
Will new illumination be implemented?
Existing illumination within the study limits will be documented and reviewed to determine the need for improvements.
Will active transportation be considered as part of this study?
Cycling and pedestrians are not permitted on controlled access highways, such as the QEW or Highway 403, although the Project Team is aware of the existing sidewalks, bike lanes and multi-use trails along municipal roads that cross under / over the QEW and Highway 403. The Project Team is working closely with the City of Burlington and the Regional Municipality of Halton to ensure that municipal Active Transportation Master Plans are considered in the overall transportation improvement strategy.
Is the Ministry considering improvements to the Burlington Bay Skyway?
The Burlington Bay Skyway is outside the study area and is not part of this study.
Will there be any impacts to the natural environment?
Detailed terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem assessments will be carried out as part of this study. Where impacts cannot be avoided, mitigation will be developed in consultation with appropriate external agencies.
Will there be an increase to noise to homeowners and businesses adjacent to the QEW / Highway 403 as a result of the proposed works? Will a noise study be conducted?
A noise assessment will be undertaken to determine noise impacts in the study area associated with the preferred alternative. This will include identifying noise sensitive areas within and adjacent to the study area, completing noise modelling, and where appropriate, noise mitigation measures will be proposed.
Will there be property impacts?
Impacts to property and property requirements will be assessed as the study progresses.
When will construction start and how long will it take?
Construction timing is dependent on the completion of the Class Environmental Assessment, Preliminary and Detail Design Studies, environmental approvals and the availability of project funding.
Is a traffic study being completed as part of the this study? When will I know the results?
A traffic study will be completed as part of this study, including traffic modelling. The traffic study will be used to assess alternatives, and the results will be presented at future consultation events.
How will construction affect traffic operations?
Construction staging and its impact on traffic will be considered as part of the evaluation of alternatives. A preliminary construction staging plan will be prepared once the preferred alternative is selected. Detailed construction staging and traffic management plans will be developed as part of the future Detail Design Study.