Alexandra Laham & Nyren Mo | April 1, 2022

Vehicles stopped by a train on Adelaide Street. (Nyren Mo)

London, ON – As the city prepares to build a rail underpass on Adelaide St. north, Londoners we spoke to said they’re looking forward to avoiding major train tie-ups.

City council has decided to to reconstruct Adelaide from Central Ave. to McMahen St., with an underpass beneath the CP Rail tracks that often stop traffic in that area. City officials say they will It plans to maintain two lanes of traffic during the construction period through a road detour to the east of Adelaide Street.

Construction on the map (City Of London)

The budget has skyrocketed since to nearly $88 million, much higher than the its 2018 estimate atof $58.3 million. Now, the price is estimated to be 50 per cent higher at $87.6 million. 

The construction is set to begin in spring of 2022 and be completed by 2025.

We talked to residents, employees of local businesses and drivers to get their opinion on the city’s reconstruction plan. 

Daniel Johnson and Avhishek Makdie

Daniel Johnson and Avhishek Makdie. (Nyren Mo)

Damage-prevention technicians Daniel Johnson and Avhishek Makdie said Adelaide is one of the heavier traffic areas in the city, and the trains are a major cause of delays and road congestion.

“I just take a chance mostly,” said Johnson, about his decision on whether to avoid the route, who was unhappy about the project being over budget.

“For a short time, [it’s] a lot of money and investment,” said Makdie addressing the three-year project. “But if we think about the long term, then it might save people’s time.” 

Michelle Curtiss

Lusitana Portuguese Bakery, where Michelle Curtiss works as a cashier. (Nyren Mo) 

“It was about an hour and 20-minute wait,” said area resident Michelle Curtiss, recalling the time she got stuck while out walking her dog.

“I just live around the corner, but I got stuck on the other side of the tracks.

An employee at nearby Lusitana Portuguese Bakery, Curtiss said she thinks the roadwork will benefit the bakery once its done.

“I know [the underpass] will make it easier for us to go out for catering because once the underpass is done, we won’t have to worry about waiting for a train,” she said. 

“I think there will be a lot more people commuting past because they know they’re not going to get stuck by a train.” 

Dona Sony

Dona Sony sits at Manna Indian Grocery Store on Adelaide Street. (Alexandra Laham)

Dona Sony, cashier at Manna Indian Grocery Store, said the train has made her “very late,” when commuting by bus to work.

“When the train stops, it’s very difficult every time I come [to the store],” she said.

Dona said she has witnessed backed-up traffic many times due to the train passing.

Sony said she’s excited for the construction because the train delay is time consuming.

Jeff Lovodzinski

Canada Post delivery truck that Jeff Lovodzinski drove. (Nyren Mo)

Jeff Lovodzinski, delivery agent for Canada Post, said the train has impacted his delivery schedules because he gets stuck by the train “all the time.”

“When I’m delivering and the train stops, the traffic will go back up to the bridge overpass on King Street and then I can’t deliver because you can’t go anywhere, you’re stuck,” he said. 

“The most I had to wait is 25 to 30 minutes.” 

He said he’s happy the city will be doing a reconstruction and hopes trains will no longer impact his deliveries. 

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