Trail to Remain Closed through August

The Pottery Road bridge project is progressing well however the Belleville Underpass reconstruction project has unfortunately had several challenges in construction.  These challenges include:

  1. A redesign and additional excavation caused by an unforeseen condition encountered during construction, and
  2. Engineering difficulties observed with the progress of the installation of the 26 caissons (supports) for the rail underpass.

Unfortunately this slower progress means that the trail will remain closed longer than first anticipated and likely an additional month until mid August or possibly September.

Fortunately  construction on the proposed detour route of Broadview Avenue is complete, with all lanes open now.

Please consider the long term benefits this underpass will bring as a major improvement when completed.  Your patience while we get there is much appreciated.

Remember that there is a Police presence on the trail to ensure cyclists are respecting the closure for their own safety.  Be safe and do not trespass through the construction site as trucks are not able to see cyclists safely as they progress in and out of the site along the trail.  Images above show the large equipment in process with very large shoring rigs, concrete trucks and other construction vehicles moving through the trail area between Belleville Underpass and the Pottery Road access.

We sincerely apologize again for this unforeseen and very unfortunate summer trail closure situation. We look forward to announcing the reopening of this section of the Lower Don Trail, with major improvements to be enjoyed for generations to come.



27 thoughts on “Trail to Remain Closed through August

  1. Pingback: [updated] Lower Don Trail Closed Through August | Lower Don Trail Construction Updates

  2. Looks like the Belleville underpass is being built to support Metrolinx trains through the valley on the east side of the river. I haven’t seen any plans from Metrolinx that show where this rail line is going to go or serve. Can we get some transparency on what’s happening here?


      • The delay does not affect only cyclists nor are cyclists the only trail users to be “admonished” about disregarding construction signs. A whole host of Torontonians and out-of-town guests use and are using this trail. It was very unfortunate planning to put a major connecting route out of commission for the summer months. Yes, cyclists have been forced to adopt these routes as commuter routes because the on-street alternatives are unsafe but these trails service joggers, some preparing for the fall Marathon, families getting some reprieve from the heat, dog walkers, etc. Closures like these have been par for the course these past few years, like the current closures at Martin Goodman trail in the Beaches and at Leslie, the Humber River Trail at 401 and Scarlett Road. The refrain that we’ll benefit in the future is wearing a bit thin as our people’s patience. We saw extensive repairs to the Martin Goodman trail at Leslie before 2010 and then had to deal with (and are still dealing with 4 years on) construction all over again. If there is an organization to the construction it’s not apparent.


    • If GO service is to be expanded to northern Durham Region and Peterborough using the CPR’s Havelock Sub’, this trackage would be used to access Union Station. The last passenger service to use this line would have been the VIA “Dayliner” that ran between Toronto and Havelock until I think the 80s.


  3. How am I not surprised by this, I’ve been nearly knocked off my bike twice since using broadview as an alternative route. Why state unrealistic completion dates…Disappointed as per usual


  4. Thank you for the update. For the detour on the newly resurfaced section of Broadview, were there any pavement markings or bicycle facilities included as part of the construction? With the trail closure delayed even further through the rest of the summer, we are looking for safe alternatives to cycle with our children and we are hoping to use a route that is not mixed with regular roadway traffic.


  5. Am I surprised? No. The City seems to find it impossible to estimate the time taken by projects and in this case it is hard to use the excuse of bad weather. We had very mild winter, an early spring and it has barely rained all summer. No doubt we will eventually have heavy rain and THEN the delays can be put down to flooding. Stay tuned. (Of course, if CARS were involved the Mayor would have the work going on 24/7 but then we are only cyclists!


  6. HI. Just out of curiosity, is this not the type of project that could have been started early September as to not completely wash out the entire summer of 2016?

    Liked by 1 person

    • The work did start in September 2015, with the aim that any possible trail closures would likely be in the early spring. Unfortunately that is not how it worked out with the contractors, related utilities and unexpected engineering challenges.


  7. The delays are unfortunate but there are alternatives and lets stay positive. We are fortunate to have a good network of bike paths already, (yes, more should be added but they are not cheap) and as someone who uses that path year round, there never would be a good time to do it.


  8. yeah I am completely unsurprised.

    I wish you guys would simply label the trails as closed rather than string people along with dates you can NEVER EVER HIT.

    there’s another detour at the bad of the valley that I’ve watched them slap stickers on the original date for years now. years!


  9. Considering that most of this rail line is in disrepair and would requires significant rebuilding, why is the city wasting any money at this time to try to put the rail back? There are no foreseeable plans in the future to use this abandoned rail line.And if it does become reactivated, why do I think that at that time, this will probably have to be completely redone anyways?


  10. I understand that the trail is closed during the work day. But there’s no work going on in the evenings and on weekends. So how difficult it is to reopen the trail at the end of the working day, so people can use it to commute back home, and on the weekends? Why does it have to remain closed when no construction is going on?


    • At this phase of the work there are hazards in the work area sections of the trail that remain 24/7 and can not be easily fenced off and a safe in adjacent detour provided. It would not be appropriate for the City to invite families to pass through with these hazards. Again we apologize for the extended inconvenience.


  11. Some people enter the trail from places north of the construction and should no be affected. For example, north from the Riverdale Park Bridge has no activity. Why close the whole thing? [Edit: trespassing in the construction area is prohibited and unsafe]


    • This long section of closure is required because there are no exits to the trail past the closure points at Pottery Road and Riverdale Park Bridge, from either direction. Specifically the area at the Belleville Underpass near Riverdale Park East, is under heavy construction with 24/7 hazards.

      Again, we apologize for the extended inconvenience.


  12. On a slightly unrelated vein, south of the GO train yard east of Cherry Street there has been signage sating that the trail to Cherry Street will be closed until the “project” is finished. Any idea when this trail will be reopened?


  13. On a slightly related note, does anyone know when the trail on the south side of the GO train yard to Cherry Street will be reopened? Signage says the trail will be reopened when the “project” is completed. The trail has been closed for at least two summers now.


    • I believe you are talking about eastward section of trail that is being reconstructed as part of the West Don Lands Stormwater Treatment Facility project.
      The aim is to have all of the work, including the trail completed and open to the public, in early 2018. For more information about that project, contact


  14. The really annoying thing about this closure is that the trail was absolutely fine in this section. From a cyclist’s perspective, this work will bring no benefit at all. You’re risking our lives for no reason. The only section of the trail that really needs work – the north face of the small hill north of pottery road, just before millwood i believe – isn’t being touched by this. That work is being saved for some future summer closure, I assume, although I can see no mention of it in the plan which Mr. Diceman keeps linking.

    Let me explain. The only part of the section you’ve closed that had a real problem with its surface already had road access and a built-in bypass right beside it (that being the gravel sideroad off of the DVP access from Bloor street, which leads to the… transformer station, i think it is?). The surface was entirely fine, fantastic even, aside from one ten meter section that was a little bumpy due to tree roots on its east side. I will honestly be surprised if you’ve even touched that section by the time the work is done.

    So what do we get? A bridge to bayview that can be built without shutting down the only safe north-south cycling corridor for an entire year, maybe a slightly less ugly underpass (huzzah), and the promise of another extended closure whenever they get around to cleaning up the tree roots in “phase 2”. Thumbs up, Toronto!

    Ahh well. Maybe Metrolinx is planning on putting a GO line in at the Toronto Zoo! I wonder if they’ve told Canadian Pacific yet.


  15. A very easy and safe alternative if heading north is to take the Lakeshore trail east to Logan and take Logan north up to Mortimer. Then head west and down Pottery Road to rejoin the trail. It’s a few extra clicks (which I am fine with), but Logan is very bike friendly with few stoplights. I personally always avoid Broadview as I find it dangerous at the best of times. Looking forward to seeing the finished product when the trail reopens. Thanks for the updates J. Diceman, I would say this has been handled well in terms of keeping the public up to speed.


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