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  • Highway 427 Expansion / Extension to Start in 2016-2017

    hwy427northmap

    The long awaited extension of Highway 427 which will take it north to Major Mackenzie Drive and a lot closer to the Bolton and Caledon area looks to be finally moving forward with a construction start date slated for 2016-2017.

    As I have written previously about this (original article & second update), this project has moved forward at a very slow pace, so much so that the municipalities accelerated the widening of Highway 50 to six lanes from Hwy 7 to Mayfield Rd to handle the increased growing traffic in the near term.

    Premier Kathleen Wynne announced the project was moving forward back in 2013 but there was no certainty due to a minority government and then a defeated budget in 2014 which triggered the provincial elections. With a new majority government the Premier tabled the budget again which confirmed the Highway 427 Expansion / Extension to start in 2016-2017.

    According to the official Ontario Budget notes, “The Ministry of Transportation has completed the preliminary design and received environmental assessment clearance for the project, and is moving forward as quickly as possible with obtaining the required property and making arrangements for utility relocations.”

    The extension will consist of three new interchanges at Langstaff Road and Rutherford Road as well as Major Mackenzie Drive, nine bridges and protection for a future transit way and transit stations along the west side of the highway. The current terminus at Zenway Blvd. will be removed with Langstaff being the first new exit of the extension. To view a detailed high resolution PDF map of the planned extension, click here.

    The cost of the Highway 427 expansion will be upwards of $500 million and will take approximately three years to complete and hopefully barring any further delays open sometime in 2020.

    Bolton, Ontario is Restaurant Franchise Death – 2014 Update

    Caledon_Restaurants2

    Back in 2011 I wrote about the state of food franchise business in Bolton, Ontario and how things looked bleak. Fast forward to 2014 and not much has changed in that time. Some new ones have come in like Starbucks but others have continued to fail (repeatedly).

    When I last wrote about it Boston Pizza had just re-opened under new ownership but has yet again failed and has closed up. The few times I had gone in there while it was open it was almost always nearly empty. One time in particular I recall I couldn’t even find an employee to order a drink, I had to walk into the back kitchen area to find someone, oblivious to what I wanted.

    The Wild Wing restaurant at the movie theatre complex is another curious story, the restaurant mysteriously closed last year for while and the whole place was gutted. It eventually re-opened but did not last very long, it yet again closed down, this time I think for good.

    The Cora’s restaurant in the Home Depot plaza was briefly replaced by Chinese restaurant which has also gone out of business relatively quickly. There was also a Jimmy the Greek Express in the same plaza that went out of business in record time, it has now turned into a CIBC bank.

    Also although not a franchise the longtime local favorite (since 1971) Baffo’s Pizza recently closed down at the beginning of this year. After undergoing a massive expansion a number of years ago to the Queen St./Hwy 50 location they were massively in debt. The new restaurant was beautifully done however it was perhaps an over expansion, Bolton simply does not have the population to support a restaurant of that size. Baffo’s closed down with a reported $97,231.91 being owed to the landlord and as of August 2014 it still remains closed to it appears unlikely it will ever return.

    Among the new franchise entrants to Bolton is Starbucks, Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen & Hole-E-Burger Bar, all three of them in the former KFC/Pizza Hut location. The Starbucks seems extremely popular so far but the other two constantly look deserted, that doesn’t bode well for them. The nearby Second Cup at the Canadian Tire may be in danger too now that people are flocking to the Starbucks instead.

    So is Bolton Ontario still Restaurant Franchise Death?

    That remains to be seen but in the last 3 years not much has improved. There is still huge glut of retail space in general for Bolton. For example the Home Depot shopping plaza area in particular continues to suffer still with half empty stores many years later.

    Many people have commented on my original post; this was more of a divisive issue then I had originally thought. Not everyone agrees with the notion that Bolton doesn’t have enough population to support the businesses although that is definitely a contributing cause.

    Another good point made by a few people is that owners of the new franchises are not doing their due diligence in researching the demographics of the area. Others have said the failed restaurants either had terrible service or poor quality food, that also may be the case for some of them.

    In the near term things may actually get worse for all Bolton businesses, once the Bolton Arterial Road System “Bolton by-pass” is complete (final section of the road now under construction) the north-south traffic passing through may choose to by-pass Bolton completely.

    Canadian Tire set to build giant warehouse in Caledon

    canadiantiretruck
    Canadian Tire appears set to build a new giant warehouse in Caledon, Ontario after Caledon council backed an unusual measure to keep hundreds of jobs in Peel Region, however many residents object to this controversial project due to rising truck traffic and low-wage industry.

    Residents in Caledon, Bolton and surrounding areas fighting to stop the huge Canadian Tire distribution centre on 73 hectares (180 acres) were shocked to learn that the province stepped in and issued a rare order allowing construction to begin immediately.

    Canadian Tire currently employs about 800 people at a warehouse in Brampton and there were fears the company would relocate the jobs to Quebec if it wasn’t able to move its expanding operations to the more spacious location on the south end of Bolton.

    Caledon Mayor Marolyn Morrison said her council with the support of Peel Region council asked for the special order to keep Canadian Tire from moving its Brampton facility outside of the region.

    Residents in the area say they fear the truck traffic and don’t want 800 trucks travelling up and down Highway 50 seven days a week and around the clock. Some of this could be alleviated if the Highway 427 extension is eventually build.

    More info on the Canadian Tire Caledon Warehouse project:

    cdntirewhmap
    The location of the new Canadian Tire Caledon Warehouse is on the corner of Healey Rd. and Coleraine Dr. in Bolton, Ontario.

    Highway 427 Expansion / Extension – Delayed / Postponed – Update November 2012

    Highway 427 extension

    One of the most popular posts here on this site has been the “Highway 427 Expansion / Extension” article I posted back in 2009. Several people have emailed me recently to ask what the current status of the project is so I thought now would be a good time give an update as best as I can. I qualify that because there isn’t a ton of information available to the current status but let’s look at what we have.

    The Environmental Assessment (EA Report) and road design for the Highway 427 extension project was submitted and approved back in 2010. The decision to build the new expansion north into the Caledon area then laid with the Ministry of Transportation and the Ontario Government. Not too long after that the Ontario government announced the Southern Highways Program (SHP) which outlined a five-year investment plan in highway construction for Southern Ontario, unfortunately and a disappointment to many the Highway 427 extension was not on the list of projects. Instead the project was listed under “Projects Beyond 2014″.

    In response to the project being left off the SHP I found a letter from Barbara Karrandjas, Legislative Administrator of the Town of Caledon urging then Minister Kathleen Wynne to reconsider the 427 Extension and add it to the list to be built sooner and even going further asking for the extension project to further to Highway 9 instead of the initial design. The argument for going to Highway 9 instead of just Major Mackenzie Drive is that the 400 series highway should end at a regional road instead of a local road.

    So when will this expansion/extension of Highway 427, a 6.6 kilometre extension from Highway 7 to Major Mackenzie Drive be built? Nobody really knows for sure, budgeting was supposed to take place for this project already but with a massive provincial deficit and the Ontario Liberals currently in turmoil proroguing the minority government until early 2013 it looks unlikely there will be any movement or direction with the project. Also adding to the bad news is the recent news that the Highway 404 extension is late and behind schedule making it even less likely they would start a new project before that one is finished.

    Richard Whitehead, Regional Councillor for Caledon’s Ward 3 & 4 comments:

    “It’s definitely stalled. That’s why we have accelerated the widening of 50 to six lanes right from hwy 7 to Mayfield Rd. It’s really disappointing to hear a Province talk about the need for growing the economy when they don’t, at least, improve the provincial highway system leaving to the municipalities to bridge the gap. Every business, every job, and every litre of fuel pours money into the Provincial coffers. It’s not as if the economy hasn’t already paid for the road several times over while we’ve been waiting.”

    For now residents in the Caledon, Vaughan, and Brampton areas will have to suffer with increased traffic congestion that all the new development has caused in the area. The Highway 427 extension is a badly needed infrastructure project for the area but we will have to wait and see for now.

    *** UPDATE – August 2014, click here to see an update on this Highway 427 project. ***

    The “Bolton by-pass” – Bolton Arterial Road System (B.A.R.) – Update November 2012

    The Bolton, Ontario by-pass (B.A.R.)

    As previously posted here about  the “Bolton by-pass” – Bolton Arterial Road System (B.A.R.), I have a new update on the status of the project from Richard Whitehead, Regional Councillor for Caledon’s Ward 3 & 4 who was kind enough again to fill us in about how the project is progressing. Below is his update on the project.


    Here is the latest update (as of last week) on the western B.A.R. (Bolton Arterial Road system).

    The south western arm from Mayfield Road to Harvest Moon on Coleraine is completed to a four lane profile and to Regional standards to carry all types of vehicles and higher traffic volumes.

    For instance, Hwy 50 south of Mayfield Road carries 38,000 vehicles trips per day and, currently, Coleraine Drive carries only 8,200 vehicle trips per day. Both are four lane Roads. When Coleraine Drive was rebuilt to four lanes, all underground (sewer, water, and gas) and above ground (hydro) services were upgraded to accommodate more growth in our employment areas.

    King Street to downtown Bolton has now been relocated from Station Road to Coleraine Drive allowing for a more direct connection from Harvest Moon – Coleraine to down town including a more effective pedestrian link.

    The completion of the new King Street link to Harvest Moon now completes the southern B.A.R. (Coleraine Drive, Mayfield Road, Town Line, and the King Street link to Harvest Moon). It is now possible to restrict King Street traffic through downtown Bolton to prohibit heavy trucks directing them, instead, to use the southern B.A.R. instead as the east west by-pass.

    The all important north western extension of the B.A.R. (commonly called the Bolton By-pass will begin in the spring of 2013 and be completed to full traffic flows by the fall/winter of 2014 with final completion including trailway connections by the spring of 2015.

    The Region of Peel will be building this critical and expensive link in the system. This construction will include a long span bridge across the Humber River and two large traffic circles (roundabouts) one at the Coleraine extension, Duffy’s Lane and King Street and at the Coleraine extension to Hwy 50 north just north of the Bolton urban community.

    Completion of the north western B.A.R. will enable us to remove north-south heavy vehicle traffic from Queen Street (hwy 50) in Bolton by 2014.

    Removal of heavy trucks from the Bolton Core residential community will greatly relieve traffic congestion in this confined and densely developed areas.

    At the same time Peel is planning to widen Mayfield Road to four lanes from Airport Road to Hwy 50 and Hwy 50 to six lanes from Mayfield Road down to Castlemore Road (Rutherford Road).

    These dramatic changes to our roads infrastructure will solve local congestion issues and provide the highway networking for the additional 13,000 people that will be moving to Bolton before 2031 taking its population up to 40,000 from the current 26,000. Additionally the expanded road network will handle increasing traffic from our growing employment lands.

    The extension of the 427 from hwy 7 to Major Mackenzie and the building of another road network in north east Brampton will also greatly improve traffic management as the whole area continues to grow in Vaughan, Brampton and Caledon (Bolton).

    - Richard Whitehead


    Thanks again to Richard Whitehead for keeping us up to date with this information, Richard can be reached at 905-880-0911 or by email: Richard.Whitehead@caledon.ca

    Mock Hunt at the Mimosa Cup 2012 in Caledon

    Mock Hunt in Caledon #1

    Here are some photos of a mock hunt that took place at the Mimosa Cup 2012 that takes place at the Eglinton and Caledon Hunt club this past weekend. The Eglinton and Caledon Hunt is based on Creditview Road in Caledon, Ontario and has a long history going back to 1843. On this mock hunt I believe there was at least 25 Hound dogs, all very well trained and obedient, as a hound lover it was a pleasure to see so many of them all together.

    Mock Hunt #2  Mock Hunt #3
    Mock Hunt #4  Mock Hunt #5

    Abandoned House on Highway 9, Caledon, Ontario

    Abandoned House, Highway 9, Caledon

    These are some photos I took recently of an abandoned house on Highway 9 in the Caledon, Ontario area that borders New Tecumseth. Every day I drive by this house and I have always been curious as to what happened to this place. This particular house is located on Highway 9 between Mount Pleasant and Mount Wolfe roads, it is on the north side of the road.

    The photos are of the old farm house and what is left on the property. The house has been exposed to the elements and is decaying. There is two older boats and an older brown Chevrolet Monte Carlo also abandoned in the back which isn’t visible from the road. There is also a silo and a garage/barn type structure in the rear. The farm land surrounding the property appears to be kept up and worked even if this property rots.

    Despite the neglect to this old home I think it still has the potential to be restored if someone wanted to do so. I am not sure how long this house has been abandoned, it has some modern wiring and plumbing and wasn’t as overly trashed as I was expecting to find it inside however I believe it has been abandoned at least 5 years to my knowledge but probably a lot longer than that.

    Click on the images to open up larger photos, if you want to see more photos click here to go to the photo album of about 50 pictures of this abandoned house.

      
      
      

    Full Moon

    The Moon on April 7th 2012

    Here is a new photo of the Moon I took on April 6th, 2012, which is the full moon here in Caledon, Ontario. The photo was taken with my Olympus E-620 camera and my large Sigma 50-500mm (Bigma) lens at full length. Click on the image above to see a larger detailed photo.

    Watchful Eye

    Hawk on a Pole in Caledon, Ontario

    A Red-tailed Hawk keeping a watchful eye of the prey below. Not my best hawk photo but it was a quick shot that I took out of the window of my car when I saw him on the side of Airport road. Hard to believe it is winter here in Caledon with so little snow, the photo looks like it is from the fall still and not late January. Click on the above image for a larger photo.

    Claude Presbyterian Church, Caledon

    Claude Presbyterian Church, Caledon

    The Claude Presbyterian Church in Caledon, Ontario on Hwy 10 just south of Olde Base Line Rd.

    Ever since moving up to Caledon I’ve wanted to photograph this church, I’ve always thought it looked unique and interesting but just never got around to it, I finally managed to do it last weekend and was even able to capture it with some blue sky in the winter, a feat in itself. Photo taken with my standard lens and processed in Photomatix software.

    The church dates back to 1870 with the congregation going back even further to 1843, extensive renovations & restorations were also made in 1992. For a full history on the building click here to see their website that has a detailed history about the church. For more info on Church’s current activities their website is here: www.claudechurch.com