New bridges built in Morningside Heights

Two new bridges were unveiled by Mayor David Miller recently at Morningside and Finch Avenues to help improve access to the Morningside Heights community.

The bridges replace the previous structure, which was seen as impractical and unsafe.

The old bridge allowed for only a single lane of traffic to travel underneath the railway. This meant traffic could only go in one direction at a time. The tight squeeze under the bridge also put pedestrians at risk.

“Basically, the idea behind the project was to improve traffic flow and increase pedestrian safety,” project manager Peter Pilateris said.

The project features two new bridges which allow for two lanes of traffic in each direction, sidewalks, bike paths beside Morningside Avenue, and bike lanes on Finch Avenue.

The project cost around $34 million. At the ribbon-cutting ceremony, Miller mentioned his unpopular vehicle licence registration fee helped pay some of the cost. Another $2.5 million was contributed by the Canadian Pacific Railway.

Residents appear to welcome the new bridges despite two years of construction.

“There was a big turnout of residents and they all seemed pretty happy about it,” said Pilateris, speaking about the project’s media session. “A lot of people bought those houses and were waiting for these intrastructure improvements, so it’s been a long time coming.”