Construction to begin next month on Ontario's highway service centres

New modern facilities will create jobs and contribute to road safety

TORONTO, Oct. 26 /CNW/ - The Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has signed an interim agreement with its preferred proponent Host Kilmer Service Centres Inc. (HKSC), authorizing the start of construction on seven of the sites in early November 2009.

Local economies will be boosted by the redevelopment of the service centres. Approximately 350 construction workers will be on all the sites during construction. Once complete, each service centre will employ approximately 100 to 150 people. In total, up to 2,500 people will be employed across the service centre system.

"The first of our modern new highway service centres are scheduled to be open for motorists in less than a year. Work will start next month at the seven centres where the old leases expired first," said Transportation Minister Jim Bradley. "These new service centres will contribute to road safety, support tourism and create thousands of jobs."

MTO and HKSC will issue regular notices to inform motorists of closures, planned interim services and new service centre openings, as other service centres are prepared for renewal.

    
    Phase One includes:
    -   Bainsville (westbound), near the Quebec/Ontario border
    -   Tilbury South (eastbound) between Windsor and Chatham Kent
    -   Tilbury North (westbound) west of Chatham-Kent
    -   West Lorne (westbound) west of London
    -   Trenton North (westbound) west of Belleville
    -   Dutton (eastbound) east of Chatham-Kent
    -   Morrisburg (eastbound) east of Prescott
    

Starting in early November, the old service centre buildings will be demolished and excavation, foundations and structural steel work will begin, subject to environmental approvals.

The first seven service centres will reopen with fuel, washrooms, parking and a convenience store in July 2010 and become fully operational in September 2010. The new centres will offer quick service dining, coffee, convenience retail, enhanced truck facilities, tourism information, and state-of-the-art washrooms that are fully accessible to families and disabled individuals.

"We appreciate the patience motorists have shown as we redevelop these sites," Bradley said.

Designed with environmentally responsible and sustainable features, the new service centres will be constructed to LEED Silver (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification standards - a respected green building rating system.

For the last several months, the province and HKSC have been working to complete site planning and design to prepare for construction. Activities included environmental planning with public participation, investigating geo-technical and topographical site conditions; and completing the design of the service centres.

The province expects its investment in the new service centres to be fully recovered in payments from the leaseholder over the duration of the lease, under terms of a contract to be finalized by the end of 2009.

Infrastructure Ontario has been managing the competitive procurement of a new operator on behalf of the Ontario Ministry of Transportation. Infrastructure Ontario is a Crown Corporation dedicated to the renewal of the province's hospitals, courthouses and other essential public assets.

For more information about this project, please visit:

- www.mto.gov.on.ca

- www.infrastructureontario.ca

Disponible en français

    
                                 Backgrounder
                    Service Centres Construction Schedule

    Phase One of Redevelopment
    --------------------------

    As the redevelopment of Ontario's Service Centre's moves forward, seven
sites have undergone remediation activities in order to prepare them for the
construction of new and modern facilities. In addition, environmental
assessment work and design development has occurred in order to be in a
position to begin construction as soon as possible.

    Construction is planned to begin in November 2009 at:
    -   Bainsville (westbound), near the Quebec/Ontario border
    -   Tilbury South (eastbound) between Windsor and Chatham Kent
    -   Tilbury North (westbound) west of Chatham-Kent
    -   West Lorne (westbound) west of London
    -   Trenton North (westbound) west of Belleville
    -   Dutton (eastbound) east of Chatham-Kent
    -   Morrisburg (eastbound) east of Prescott
    

These sites were the first to close and they will be first ones to be modernized.

These service centres will reopen their doors in July 2010 with fuel, washrooms, parking and convenience stores.

By September 2010, when phase one of the modernization project is fully complete, these service centres will offer restaurants, family and fully accessible restrooms, tourist services at the gateway sites, and other new services and features.

    
    Availability of full and interim services during Phase One
    ----------------------------------------------------------

    Throughout Phase One of construction, full services, including parking for
trucks at half the service centres along Highways 400 and 401 will continue to
be provided at the remaining open sites as noted below until the start of the
redevelopment phase.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Napanee - Hwy 401      *Woodstock - Hwy 401     *King City - Hwy 400
    westbound               eastbound                  northbound
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    *Newcastle - Hwy 401  Cambridge South - Hwy 401  Barrie - Hwy 400
    westbound               eastbound                  northbound
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Cambridge North - Hwy   Port Hope - Hwy 401        Cookstown - Hwy 400
    401 westbound           eastbound                  southbound
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    *Ingersoll - Hwy 401  Odessa - Hwy 401          *Maple - Hwy 400
    westbound               eastbound                  southbound
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    *Service centres with more truck parking capacity than the other sites.

    During phase one of construction, interim services will be available at:
Dutton eastbound, Morrisburg eastbound, Trenton North (westbound) and Tilbury
North (westbound). Interim services include parking, washrooms, water,
telephones and limited food services.

    All Phases of Redevelopment
    ---------------------------
    

The service centres redevelopment project will include demolition of outdated service centre buildings, excavation work and construction of new facilities. These activities have been sequenced to ensure the service centres open as quickly as possible. The reopening will take place in two stages: the newly modernized service centres will reopen and provide basic travel services including fuel, washrooms, parking and telephones; redevelopment will be fully completed within three months of opening and full services will be available to the traveling public.

The Ministry of Transportation and Host Kilmer Service Centres Inc. have developed a similar plan for subsequent phases. While reopening dates for the remaining Service Centres could be affected by the extent of environmental remediation required at each site, as well as the environmental assessment process, the following schedule is currently projected:

    
    -   Mallorytown South, Mallorytown North, Ingleside and Trenton South,
        all located along Highway 401 East, are projected to reopen in spring
        2011.
    -   Woodstock along Highway 401 West and Port Hope, Napanee and Odessa
        along Highway 401 East are slated to reopen in fall 2011.
    -   Cookstown and Barrie centres along the Highway 400 corridor are
        projected to reopen in winter 2012.
    -   Cambridge North and Cambridge South along Highway 401 West and King
        City along Highway 400, all of which are projected to reopen by
        winter 2012/2013.
    

To minimize impacts on travellers, we are working to ensure that the drivers are aware of privately operated and easily accessible alternative service areas located at and visible from interchanges along the highway that are open on a 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year basis. Once a service centre has been closed, special signs are being posted on the highway in advance of those service centres that do not have fuel or services indicating the exits at which 24/7 parking, fuel and food are available from private operators. These signs are also posted closer to those specific exits to remind drivers that those sites are coming up. For more information, please visit:

- www.mto.gov.on.ca

- www.infrastructureontario.ca

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited members of the media/

SOURCE Infrastructure Ontario

For further information: For further information: Bob Nichols, Ministry of Transportation, (416) 327-1158; Paulette den Elzen, Infrastructure Ontario, (416) 327-5764


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