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9 Comments

cityscape

For Don Valley Cyclists, It’s Pedals on the Metal

Two new bridges along the Don Valley bicycle trail are slated to open on June 1.

Good news for cyclists who use the official City trails in the Don Valley: barring weather-related disruptions, on June 1, you’ll no longer have to take alternate routes to detour around the construction of two shiny new metal bridges by Don Mills Road.

Last August, the City closed access to the Bailey Bridge crossing the CNR/GO train line east of Don Mills Road and the wooden walkway leading to it from Ernest Thompson Seton Park, as well as the connection in the park between the Don and Taylor Creek Ravine trails. The official City detour suggested a lengthy route through Thorncliffe Park and the Leaside Bridge [PDF], but many cyclists have used simpler, if not always legal, workarounds. Those options range from a worn dirt path leading to the mountain bike trails in Crothers Woods to sneaking through the construction fencing to cross the track at train level.

Now, a new walkway replaces wood with steel, covered with an asphalt surface. The Bailey Bridge, meanwhile, has been refurbished with new railing and an anti-slip metal deck. (It was originally built in 1972.)

The project was scheduled to wrap up in March, but the unstable nature of the soil under the walkway caused problems. “Fill and crap” is how a Parks official described the mix of soil along the slope to us. While it was fine for supporting the old wooden structure, it wasn’t suitable for holding up steel.

Reinforcement of the walkway footings took place last week, leaving trail paving as the last major task to be performed before the structures open to cyclists on the first day of June.

Photos by Jamie Bradburn/Torontoist.

Comments

  • HotDang

    Oh… They still have to pave it.

    • Konstantine Palanski

      For a second I was wondering if they figured out a sure-fire way of preventing cyclists from riding through on that bridge. I’ll miss that old slippery wooden mess of a bridge.

  • Anonymous

    I’ll believe it when I see it.

  • Matt

    Its just one bridge, and the pathway leading up to it…how is this “two new bridges”? And they’re not “new” as in there was no bridge there before, it was just rebuilt. Great “journalism”.

    • B. Ross Ashley

      Actually it is one bridge over the railroad tracks, and the extended ramp down to the northern bike path on the north side of the tracks from the platform on the north side of the Bailey bridge. Structurally that ramp is a “bridge” also, and a separate structure from the other one. It is new in that it replaces the old wooden structure, it was not “rebuilt”. The building I live in was not a rebuild of the half-a-duplex that used to stand here.

  • Dogma

    Finally! It’s amazing no one has been picked off by a train.

  • BigDawg

    I like the sign in the last pick. Nice work “ugrading” the bridge people.

    • iSkyscraper

      It’s the Ford era. They are not exactly big on spelling and grammar.

  • Jesse Edwards

    “Good news for cyclists who use the official City trails in the Don Valley: barring weather-related disruptions, on June 1″ – Like flooding?