TORONTO — Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation has announced crews have completed excavation of the second of two tunnels under Highways 401 and 409, part of the Kitchener GO corridor expansion project.
The tunnel project includes a twin tunnel structure that will provide space for two additional tracks, explained a Feb. 11 release. Track, signalling and communications infrastructure will be installed under a separate contract.
Substantial completion for the 401 and 409 Rail Tunnel Project is expected to be reached in the second half of 2021.
Each rail tunnel under Highways 401 and 409 is approximately 180 metres in length, with an excavation that is 11 metres high by nine metres wide.
Tunnel one reached 100 per cent excavation on Aug. 1, 2020. Both tunnels involved the removal of approximately 70,000 cubic metres of material.
Toronto Tunnel Partners is the project consortium constructing the twin tunnel structure. The value of the contract is approximately $116.9 million.
“This tunnel project will help increase capacity on the Kitchener corridor and, where possible, support all-day trips in both directions to reduce congestion,” said Minister of Transportation Caroline Mulroney in the release. “Our goal is to establish a more reliable rail transit system in the Greater Golden Horseshoe, which will drive significant economic growth and job creation that will benefit the entire province.”
“I want to applaud Toronto Tunnel Partners for their innovative work on the Highway 401 and 409 Rail Tunnel Project, which was constructed under 21 live lanes of traffic,” said Michael Lindsay, president and CEO of Infrastructure Ontario. “We are proud to support GO expansion in the province and deliver system-wide infrastructure upgrades that will enable more frequent service.”
There are currently more than 20 major projects under construction to support the province’s GO Expansion program that will transform GO rail into a two-way, all-day rapid transit service with service every 15 minutes on core segments of the network.