The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal (TIR) has finalized plans for the Highway 101 Granite Drive Interchange and Connector.
The new interchange will be located approximately 3 km from Exit 11 (Greenwich Connector) and 3.2 km from Exit 12 (Kentville Connector). The Granite Drive connector road will complete the connection of Highway 101 to Commercial Street (Trunk 1), a total distance of approximately 1.3 km. The roadway will be a controlled access facility and built as a 2-lane minor arterial with a climbing lane and a posted speed of 70 km/h.
Construction includes a new bridge structure over Highway 101, three culvert extensions and four ramps forming a "diamond" shaped interchange. A roundabout will be constructed on each side of Highway 101 where the ramps intersect with the Granite Drive connector road (see attached Figure). A third roundabout will be constructed at the existing southern end of Granite Drive connecting the existing section of Granite Drive with Silver Fox Avenue and a new connector road to the new interchange. Length of the new section of connector road is approximately 0.9 km.
Commercial Street has carried heavy traffic volumes over the last number of years. Shopping and local events attract motorists from all over the province.
The Highway 101 Granite Drive Interchange and Connector is required to alleviate traffic congestion at Exit 12 and along a very busy section of Commercial Street.
The interchange and connector supports the following outcomes:
Information was collected to ensure the best location, design and route. The results of environmental field investigations helped define measures to be taken to eliminate, minimize, or compensate for any environmental impacts. An environmental assessment report was completed in 2012. Topographical information was collected in 2007 and 2014. A traffic study was completed in 2011 that recommended roundabouts at ramp terminals due to high peak-hour traffic volumes.
An Open House was conducted in March 2009. The purpose of the public consultation was to provide information to the public, identify any environmental issues that may be outstanding and give the public an opportunity to discuss any concerns they may have.
Construction is scheduled to begin in spring 2017, starting with the interchange structure. Placement of sub-base material for culverts will begin in 2017 and continue in 2018 for roundabouts, ramps and the connector road. Paving is scheduled for summer 2018. The anticipated completion and opening date is fall 2018.
This project was approved for Federal/Provincial cost sharing. The total estimated project cost is $16.5 million.