Skip to main content

Wellington Street likely not reopening until April or May

Wellington Street has been closed in front of Parliament Hill for nearly a year since the 'Freedom Convoy' protests began. (Leah Larocque/CTV News Ottawa) Wellington Street has been closed in front of Parliament Hill for nearly a year since the 'Freedom Convoy' protests began. (Leah Larocque/CTV News Ottawa)
Share

It could still be several more weeks before Wellington Street in front of the Parliament buildings reopens to traffic.

The road has been closed to vehicular traffic since February 2022, after the "Freedom Convoy" occupation was forcibly removed from downtown Ottawa, but council voted last month to reopen the street as soon as it was feasible.

While there was no concrete timeline for the reopening of Wellington Street to drivers, staff said it wouldn't be until after March 1, in part because of infrastructural work to reinstall traffic lights that were removed last year. Staff had estimated in late January that it could take up to two months to get the street ready again.

Interim City Manager Wendy Stephanson told reporters Wednesday that there is still a lot of work to be done.

"It's looking like, I'm going to say likely around end of April, early May in terms of taking down the barriers and opening it up to vehicle traffic," she said.

Stephanson said the work involves the light standards and the "bicycle traffic and pedestrian pieces" that need to be in place before the barriers come down. The motion council approved to reopen the street this year included adding a temporary protected bike lane.

The future of Wellington Street has been a conversation at both the municipal and federal level since the convoy protesters were removed. A parliamentary committee had recommended keeping the street closed to vehicles permanently and extending the vehicle-free zone even farther west to Kent Street.

There have also been discussions about extending the parliamentary precinct to include Wellington Street, effectively uploading responsibility to the federal government. Several roads in Ottawa, such as the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway, are federally-owned and managed. However, there is no timeline for any decisions on whether Wellington Street will become a federal property. 

CTVNews.ca Top Stories

Strange monolith pops up in Nevada desert

Jutting out of the rocks in a remote mountain range near Las Vegas, the strange monolith imitates the vast desert landscape surrounding the mountain peak where it has been erected.

Stay Connected