Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Cyclopiste de Preston (iv) Gladstone to Young

The Cyclopiste de Preston is a cycling arterial running from the Ottawa River - Bayview - under Somerset - cross Gladstone - under the Qway using an existing underpass - and joining the existing ill-maintained path running from Young Street along the Otrain corridor to Carling and then further south. The path is in the Official Cycling Plan, but since work started in 1962 has been stymied by lack of an underpass under Somerset street. Detailed design work for the underpass is underway now, as part of Somerset reconstruction. If enough people support the idea (tell your councillor!) the underpass would be built in 2010-11 and presumably the missing bits of paths too.

Previous posts covered the distance from Albert/City Centre Ave (the temporary north end of the route pending the East-West LRT construction) to Somerset, under Somerset, and slightly upslope to Gladstone.

Once the cyclist or pedestrian crosses Gladstone, there is already a well used informal goat track along the route:
The path proceeds south between the city signals storage facility (on the left) and the Otrain cut (on the right). Despite looking rather narrow and maybe a bit forbidding these tire marks indicate some cyclists know about this route. I cycle it numerous times each summer:

The path approaches the existing Qway underpass from the south, but first it has to make it way past the unpaved (and uncleaned up) parking lot on city land behind the St Anthony Soccer Club. This is an important parking lot for events there (despite its disorganized and dirty state) so I expect the cyclists will simply use one paved aisle of the parking lot to cross it:
The city has kindly installed signs to remind cyclists and parkers that this is city property. Somewhere along here, a Gladstone/ Preston LRT station is planned. It would be down in the cut, with access up to ground level at various locations.

The picture below shows the underpass under the Qway. It is wide but bleak and forbidding; some imagination will be required to make it more attractive and user friendly:

Lastly, the route comes out at Young Street, which has a turning circle, and a convenient pedestrian-cyclist overpass over the Otrain cut into the Civic Hospital neighborhood, and a short jaunt east to the Preston Square/Adobe office complex on Preston:

1 comment:

  1. That bridge is popular with junkies. Or at least it was a few years ago. From your photo, it looks the same. Up on the left behind the pillars is where they're at. I would hesitate to go in there at night.