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Traffic lights on Hanlon to remain for a while

A new interchange on the Hanlon Expressway at Laird Road is expected to open in the fall, but that’s the only progress so far in a Ministry of Transportation of Ontario plan to remove traffic lights from the Hanlon.The Hanlon interchange at Laird is a priority because it aids nearby industrial development. It will be the second one on the Hanlon. The other is at Wellington Street.
Construction of the new interchange is on schedule and should be finished by the end of October, Rajan Philips, the city’s manager of transportation and development engineering, said Thursday.
The MTO has said it wants to turn the Hanlon into a 400-series expressway linking Highway 401 with a new Highway 7 that’s to be built from the north end of the Hanlon to the Kitchener-Waterloo expressway.
In early 2009, city council approved an MTO plan for removing traffic lights from the section of the Hanlon south of the river, which included compromises meant to address concerns of people living near the expressway.
A year later, the MTO launched a two-year program of improvements to seven Hanlon intersections in the city. An MTO spokesperson said at the time that the long-term plan to turn the Hanlon into a freeway hadn’t yet been funded, except for the Laird interchange, which is being cost-shared between the province and the city.

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