Ontario's latest move to relieve Toronto-area gridlock gets underway
TORONTO—Infrastructure Ontario and the Ministry of Transportation have issued a request for qualifications for interested parties to design, build, finance and maintain the Highway 427 expansion project. The RFQ represents the first stage in a project that will look to relieve congestion across Canada’s busiest transit corridor.
Infrastructure Ontario said the Highway 427 expansion project will include a new 6.6-kilometre extension from Highway 7 to Major Mackenzie Drive – with six lanes from Highway 7 to Rutherford Road and four lanes from Rutherford Road to Major Mackenzie Drive. The extension will include three interchanges at Langstaff Road, Rutherford Road and Major Mackenzie Drive as well.
The project will also widen the highway across a 4-kilometre stretch south of Albion Road to Highway 7.
“Expanding Highway 427 will create jobs, strengthen the economy and help keep goods and people moving for years to come,” Steven Del Duca, Ontario Minister of Transportation said. “This new expansion project is proof of our commitment to making the daily commute and quality of life better for all Ontario families.”
The Highway 427 project is part of the largest infrastructure investment in Ontario’s history. The Province’s 10-year, $130-billion commitment is supported by a number of initiatives, including unlocking the value of public assets to help support investments in transit, transportation and other priority infrastructure projects.
The agency said the expansion of Ontario’s highway infrastructure will spur economic growth through development opportunities, provide congestion relief, and reduce commute and travel times on critical links, highway corridors and to international gateways.
The RFQ is the first step in the procurement process to select a team to deliver the project. Submissions will be evaluated to prequalify project teams with the relevant design and construction experience, and the capacity to finance and deliver a project of this size and complexity. Teams who qualify will be invited to respond to a request for proposals, expected to be issued in fall 2015.
The project is being delivered under Infrastructure Ontario’s Alternative Financing and Procurement model, which transfers risks associated with design, construction, financing and maintenance of the project to the private sector.
IO and MTO are working together to develop the project, which, it added, will remain publicly owned and controlled.
“Our government is committed to building a stronger, more prosperous province through the largest infrastructure investment in Ontario’s history. The Highway 427 expansion project will enhance our transportation network, stimulate employment opportunities during construction and help support future development along the highway corridor,” Brad Duguid, Ontario Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure, said.