Jump to Main Content
 

The City of Sault Ste. Marie

 
 
 

Black Road and Third Line

McNabb Street to Hospital Entrance

In 2011 the City retained AECOM Canada Ltd., a consulting engineering firm, to complete the Black Road/Third Line Class Environmental Assessment Study. The study was initiated to address changing traffic patterns and vehicular and pedestrian safety in the Black Road and Third Line corridors from Second Line to Third Line and from Black Road to the Sault Area Hospital entrance respectively. Changing traffic patterns are the result of congestion in other parallel corridors and recent new and planned developments in the northern portion of the City, including the new Sault Area Hospital (SAH).

Since the study was initiated there have been some delays to accommodate other related studies that have been proceeding in parallel. An update to the City's Transportation Master Plan was completed in January 2015 which includes projected traffic volumes for the subject road corridors. In addition, in 2014, the study limits were extended to include Black Road from McNabb Street to Second Line. The revised study area is shown in the key plan below.
The purpose of this study is to look at alternative solutions and designs to address potential impacts and possible improvements in the Black Road and Third Line corridors from McNabb Street to the SAH Entrance. Alternatives include consideration of doing nothing, road widening, pedestrian and cyclist safety and other elements. The preferred solution/design was determined based on technical requirements, environmental considerations, overall cost and public input and information gathered during the study.

The study is being conducted in accordance with the Municipal Class Environmental Assessment Process (Class EA process). The Class EA process includes identification of problems and opportunities, evaluation of alternative solutions and designs, public consultation, assessment of potential effects on the environment and identification of reasonable measures to mitigate any adverse effects.

Public and external agency consultation is a key component of this Study. Details of the alternative solutions considered were presented at an open house conducted in January, 2015 (links to some of the open house materials are provided at the end of this notification). Following the open house and with due consideration of the input received through the public consultation process, the preferred solution consists of:

  • Widening Black Road from McNabb Street to Second Line to include two through lanes in each direction.
  • Maintain a single though lane in each direction and widen the Black Road and Third Line road platforms from Second Line to Third Line and from Third line to east of the SAH entrance respectively.
  • Include road structure improvements along Black Road from Second Line to Third Line and along Third Line from Black Road to east of the SAH entrance (ie. previous reconstruction limits).
  • Forgo any servicing extensions at this time.
The principle reasons for the selection of this alternative are as follows:

  • In general a two lane road configuration (one through lane in each direction) is typically suitable for traffic volumes in the range of 14,000 vehicles per day. The projected volumes on Black Road from McNabb Street to Second Line significantly exceed this threshold but are within this threshold north of Second Line along Black Road and along Third Line.
  • Although a single lane in each direction is adequate along Black Road north of Second Line and along Third Line the existing platform width is narrow and does not provide adequate space for emergency response vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists and other non-motorized uses.
  • Black Road from Second Line to Third Line and most of Third Line within the study limits are situated outside of the Urban Service Line (USL) and would require a change to the USL limits to permit servicing extensions. In addition a significant proportion of this area also lies outside the Urban Settlement Area (USA). Expansion of the USA requires a scoped or comprehensive review which demonstrates, within the next ten years, housing demand cannot be accommodated within the existing USA.
  • The cost to the City and property owners for municipal servicing would be significant and there are no significant development pressures along these corridors at this time.
Following the open house conducted in January 2015, the project design evolved with consideration of design options for the preferred alternative. This included consideration of the cross-section type, lane widths, intersection configurations, pedestrian and cyclist safety and street lighting which were presented at an open house conducted in November, 2015 (links to some of the open house materials are provided at the end of this notification). Following the open house and with due consideration of the input received through the public consultation process, the preferred preliminary design consists of:

  • Maintain a rural road cross-section with roadside ditches and widen Black Road from McNabb Street to Second Line to include two 3.5m wide through lanes in each direction together with 2.5m wide fully paved shoulders inclusive of double solid white painted lines to provide a buffer between traffic and non-motorized uses. Upgrade the existing street lighting to provide adequate lighting for the widened roadway.
  • Reconstruct Black Road from Second Line to Third Line with a single 3.5m wide though lane in each direction and roadside ditches and widen and pave the shoulders to provide a minimum 1.5m and preferably 2.0m width with a single solid white painted line to separate traffic from non-motorized uses. Incorporate street lighting from Strathclair entrance northerly to Third Line in the area where it is not currently provided.
  • Reconstruct Third Line from Black Road to east of the SAH entrance with an urban cross-section consisting of 4.5m wide shared travel/bicycle lanes, standard curb and gutter at the edges of pavement and a minimum 2.0m wide paved trail and preferably a 2.5m wide paved trail with a 0.5m concrete boulevard to accommodate non-motorized uses along the south side of the roadway. Storm drainage is to be accommodated with a storm sewer system (Note: some drainage swales/diches may also be required).
  • Incorporate intersection improvements at Black Road/McNabb Street, Black Road/Second Line and Black Road/Third Line.
  • Reduce the posted speed along Black Road from McNabb Street to Second Line from 70km/h to 60km/h.
  • Prohibit on-street parking throughout the limits of the project.
  • Incorporate modest vertical alignment changes to improve drainage and enhance sight distance at the Birkshire Place intersection.
  • Undertake full reconstruction of the roadway along Black Road from Second Line to Third Line and along Third Line from Black Road to east of the SAH entrance to provide an adequate road structure to accommodate the increase in traffic volumes including truck traffic.
  • Incorporate signage improvements to clearly delineate the principle truck route and the Trans Canada Highway routing.
An Environmental Study Report (ESR) has been prepared which summarizes the study process, input received, the decisions made and the rationale for those decisions. Hardcopies of the project report may be reviewed at the locations noted below or a digital copy can be accessed at the link provided below.

A Notice of Completion has also been prepared and is available below.

Interested persons should provide written comment to the Municipality or the Consultant via email or hardcopy at either of the addresses noted below by February 16, 2016.

Don Elliott, P.Eng.
Director of Engineering Services
City of Sault Ste. Marie
Phone705-759-5329
Fax705-541-7165
Emaild.elliott@cityssm.on.ca

Rick Talvitie, P.Eng.
Project Manager
AECOM Canada Ltd.
Phone705-942-2612
Fax705-942-3642
Emailrick.talvitie@aecom.com

If concerns arise regarding this project, which cannot be resolved in discussion with the municipality, a person or party may request that the Minister of Environment and Climate Change make an order for the project to comply with Part II of the Environmental Assessment Act (referred to as a Part II Order), which addresses individual environmental assessments. Requests must be received by the Minister at the address below within 30 calendar days of this Notice. A copy of the request must also be sent to Don Elliott at the address noted above. If there are no requests received by February 16, 2016, the project may proceed to design and construction as presented in the planning documentation.

Minister of the Environment
135 St. Clair Avenue West, 12th Floor
Toronto, Ontario M4V 1P5

Please note that the information related to this study will be collected in accordance with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. With the exception of personal information, all comments received will become part of the public record and may be included in Study documentation prepared for public review.

Project Information

The following documents are available for viewing:

Share this page:

Contact Us

Phone
705-759-5378

Email
engineering@cityssm.on.ca

Fax
705-541-7165

TTY
1-877-688-5528

Location
Civic Centre - Level 5

Our Team