June 23, 2011
Media Release

The Regional Municipality of York identifies measures to manage disruption during vivaNext construction

Every effort will be made to minimize impacts to people travelling in and throughout the Region
NEWMARKET – The Regional Municipality of York today received a report identifying measures to aid in the management of expected disruptions during vivaNext rapidway construction on the Highway 7 Regional corridor.
“In the coming years, vivaNext construction will affect people moving in and throughout the area of Highway 7,” said York Region Chairman and CEO Bill Fisch.  “Every effort will be made to minimize these impacts as York Region works toward creating an urban transit corridor to manage growth and better serve the needs of our residents.”
Construction activities in the Highway 7 corridor will result in significant changes to traffic patterns over a wide area that will affect 14th Avenue, 16th Avenue, Yonge Street, Bayview Avenue, Leslie Street, Woodbine Avenue, Warden Avenue and Kennedy Road.
“Highway 7 moves more people than any other corridor in the Region,” said Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville Mayor Wayne Emmerson, Chair of the Region’s Transportation Services Committee.  “The growing volume of traffic and transit that moves throughout this corridor reinforces the need to minimize disruptions to travellers and highlights the vital, long-term importance of the vivaNext project.”
York Region and York Region Rapid Transit Corporation have identified a number of measures to minimize the impacts of vivaNext construction to pedestrians, cyclists, transit users, drivers, residents and businesses in York Region. 
YRT/Viva will consider implementing operational changes to mitigate the impacts of construction, including:
• Increasing the number of buses to maintain existing frequency
• Updating schedules to reflect actual travel times
• Ongoing customer communication to ensure riders are well-informed about route changes, updated schedules and expected delays
Various communications tools will be implemented to provide frequent, timely and practical information about construction activities, including:
• Construction materials for public distribution, such as project newsletters, bulletins, brochures, fact sheets and illustrations
• Public outreach via special events, presentations and group meetings
• Variable message boards that provide roadside travel time information and wayfinding signage
• Frequent construction updates posted to the web and shared via social media
• Print, broadcast, on-street and online advertising
• Community engagement activities, such as community events, open houses and on-street liaison
• Business support via events with the Chamber of Commerce and Board of Trade and ongoing liaison
In addition to maintaining transit service throughout vivaNext construction, traffic management measures will be put in place, including roadside travel information updates, online construction updates and monitoring the effectiveness of traffic signal timing.
vivaNext construction will require pedestrians to move through areas that subject them to noise and dust.  Temporary sidewalks will be installed to route pedestrians away from these impacts and maintain access to YRT/Viva stops.
Under the direction of York Region Rapid Transit Corporation (YRRTC), the design build consortium is in the detailed design phase of the approved vivaNext rapidway on Highway 7 between Bayview Avenue and Warden Avenue in the Towns of Markham and Richmond Hill.  The improvements will involve reconstruction of the existing road and installation of dedicated centre lanes for Viva buses, media platform stations, streetscaping, boulevard treatments, arterial road improvements and a sophisticated traffic control system.  The construction of this major Regional infrastructure is planned over the next three years.
For more information on vivaNext, please visit www.vivanext.com
For more information about YRT/Viva, please visit the YRT/Viva website at www.yrt.ca or call the Customer Service Centre at 1-866-MOVE-YRT (668-3978). 
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, please visit www.york.ca
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Media Contact: Michelle McEwan, Communications Specialist, York Region
 Phone:  905-830-4444, ext. 1209 or Cell: 905-251-6412
 Email:  michelle.mcewan@york.ca

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