Who is involved in this project?
The Halifax Regional Municipality has partnered with Transport Canada through funding under the National Trade Corridors Fund (NCTF), as well as the Province of Nova Scotia and the Port of Halifax. Funding was announced in June of 2019. The municipality is leading the project.
What is the National Trade Corridors Fund?
Transport Canada launched the National Trade Corridors Fund (NCTF) in July of 2017. The fund provides $2 billion over 11 years towards projects that support the flow of goods and passengers by reducing bottlenecks, addressing capacity issues, and helping transportation systems withstand the effects of climate change. The NTCF will contribute $23.5 million to the Windsor Street Exchange Redevelopment project. Funding for this project will also be provided by the Halifax Regional Municipality, the Port of Halifax, and the Province of Nova Scotia.
What are community benefits?
Community benefits are a way to increase the social impact of a municipal capital project. Benefits that could be included as part of infrastructure projects vary for each project based on the scope of the project, the impact of the project, and the opportunities identified through community consultation. They could include community improvements through design, such as active transportation connections and infrastructure upgrades, social procurement and environmental improvements.
Will consultation with the community be done?
Two types of consultation will be held. Consultation with the Africville, the Mi’kmaq and Urban Indigenous communities will identify potential opportunities to include community benefits as part of the Windsor Street Exchange project. Wider public engagement will also be held as part of the design process to share options, and receive public input on the concerns and opportunities with this transportation project.
Public consultation will be done primarily virtually to meet public health restrictions; however, the project team will also be identifying alternate ways of reaching out to ensure that engagement is fully accessible.
When will public consultation take place?
Public engagement will be held throughout the design process. Phase 1 of public engagement was held in April/May 2021, and gathered information on the existing conditions within the project area, how residents travel through the area, documented concerns from residents, businesses and property owners in the area, and identified what people want to see in the redesign of the Windsor Street Exchange. This information has been used to develop design options for the project, which will be shared in Phase 2 of public engagement beginning October 2021. Phase 3 of public engagement will share the preliminary design drawings based on functional design and feedback gathered during previous sessions, and is expected to be held in Spring 2022.
When will construction begin?
Construction is expected to take two to three years, and is scheduled to begin in 2025. Further details on construction will be available after the design process is complete.
How will these changes benefit residents and motorists in the municipality?
These upgrades will improve the safety, efficiency and reliability of primary transportation routes, and most importantly – alleviate a longstanding bottleneck in the transportation network.
The project will also further the municipality’s Integrated Mobility Plan’s goals of reducing port-related trucks traffic and traffic-related noise, improving safety, transit service, active transportation connectivity, and reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions.
What environmental impacts will this project have?
This project will reduce congestion at this long-standing bottle neck, lowering GHG emissions, and provide improved sustainable modes of transportation (active transportation and transit) through the area. A climate change risk-assessment is planned for the project and which will be integrated into the design process.
How does the Windsor Street Exchange project impact other transportation projects in the area?
The Windsor Street Exchange project is coordinating with the Bedford Highway 60% Design project, and will consider the completed Bedford Highway Functional Plan throughout the design process. The designs for both projects will intersect at the Fairview Overpass.
The Africville Active Transportation project is exploring options for an active transportation connection to Africville Museum and Africville Park from North End Halifax. The Windsor Street Exchange public engagement will be integrated with the Africville Active Transportation Connection project, as well as through consultation with the Africville community on the project scope and potential community benefits.
How does the recently approved Rapid Transit Strategy fit into the project?
The Rapid Transit Strategy, approved by Regional Council in May 2020, includes the “Green Line” through the Windsor Street Exchange. How transit moves through the area will be considered when evaluating design options for the Windsor Street Exchange Redevelopment Project.
Will road safety be reviewed as part of the study?
Collision history will be reviewed and analyzed as part of the study to improve access, connectivity and comfort for all users. Opportunities to improve safety through design and operational changes will be identified during the design process as the project progresses.
How will this impact how I travel by vehicle in the area?
Assessing impacts to vehicles travelling in the area through functional design options of the corridor is part of the project. The team will be modeling existing vehicle conditions and any impacts related to the proposed changes, as well as modeling options for redesign of the Windsor Street Exchange and the impact to the overall transportation network.
What does Complete Streets mean?
Complete Streets are planned, designed, and maintained to make travel safe, convenient, and comfortable for people of all ages and abilities and using all transportation modes. The Windsor Street Exchange is an important link for all modes of transportation (active transportation, transit, vehicle traffic and goods movement), and the redesign will improve the people moving capacity of the intersection.