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Completion of Gardiner rehabilitation project to be delayed 3 years

Last Updated Apr 12, 2021 at 12:18 pm EDT

Construction cranes feature on the skyline in Toronto seen from the Gardiner Expressway on Wednesday, July 5, 2017. Toronto's real estate industry heard Friday they will need to become increasingly nimble and adaptable as tenants expectation and building possibilities rapidly evolve. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

Toronto drivers finally got a break on Monday morning as the eastern portion of the Gardiner Expressway between Jarvis and Cherry, which had been reduced from three lanes to two since 2019, fully reopened to traffic.

But it’s not all good news.

The end of construction in that area represents a completion of just the first phase of the rehab project, and 680 NEWS is now learning that the city’s timeline to fix up the entire stretch of the aging expressway will be delayed by three years.

The original plan was for crews complete work on the Gardiner in seven phases between the 427 and the Don Valley Parkway over eight years.

“With the effects of age, heavy usage, weather and salt, this is critical work that needs to be done” the city said in a release.

Phase 1 began in 2019 and all areas were to be repaired by 2027.

Now, the city says phase 2, planned for the section of the Gardiner between roughly Dufferin and Strachan and originally set to begin this year, won’t start until 2022.

“Staff continually review the overall delivery schedule against any developments in the construction industry, changing regulations and impacts from new infrastructure and transit projects” city spokesperson Hakeem Muhammad said in an email. “While timelines are always subject to change considering the complexity of the project, there are currently no impacts to the 2030 date.”

So, for the better part of the next decade, drivers can expect portions of the Gardiner to be under lane restrictions as long-term construction continues.

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