E. C. Row Expressway

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E.C. Row Expressway
E.C. Row
Highway 7087 (Unsigned)
Route information
Length: 18.3 km (11.4 mi)
History: Planned 1969
Constructed 1971–June 9, 1983
Major junctions
West end: Ojibway Parkway intersection in West Windsor, Ontario
  Huron Church Road
Dougall Parkway
Lauzon Parkway
East end: City of Windsor/Town of Tecumseh Limits
Location
Major cities: Windsor
Highway system
Roads in Ontario

The E C Row Expressway is a municipal expressway in the Canadian city of Windsor, Ontario. It divides the city in half as it crosses it between the Ojibway Parkway in the west and Banwell Road in the east. The expressway is named after Ohio born Edward Charles Row, the president of Chrysler Canada between 1951 and 1956.[1] Though it was formerly a part of Highway 2 and Highway 18, the province fully transferred ownership and responsibility for the route to the City of Windsor on April 1, 1997.

Though it allows for easy travel across the city, the E.C. Row Expressway does not connect to the United States; drivers can access the Ambassador Bridge via Huron Church Road, or the Detroit–Windsor tunnel via Dougall Parkway, which also provides the most direct access to Highway 401. This situation will change in the near future as the Windsor–Essex Parkway is constructed in the west end of the city. The parkway will extend Highway 401 to a new border crossing and will travel concurrently with the expressway from Huron Church Road to the Ojibway Parkway.

Route description[edit]

The E.C. Row Expressway begins at a signalized intersection with the Ojibway Parkway, curving gently from northeastward to eastward. It progresses east as a four lane controlled-access highway with a box beam median and grade-separated interchanges.

The western half of the route is mostly surrounded by suburban residential developments, while the eastern half passes by airport and various automotive manufacturing plants, amongst other industrial, manufacturing and retail areas. The expressway is approximately 15.4 km (9.6 mi) long with a speed limit of 100 kilometres per hour (62 mph).

History[edit]

The history of the E.C. Row Expressway dates back to January 1963, when the City of Windsor and the Department of Highways released a report called The Windsor Area Transportation Study (WATS).[2] One of the primary issues identified by the study was "a limited and inadequate street network in the east-west direction generally resulting from several railway barriers."[3] Properties were purchased along E.C. Row Avenue and the Third Concession beginning in 1958 for what was then intended as a two lane road linking Highway 18 with Highway 39 (which became Highway 2 in 1970). However, with the release of WATS and the subsequent amalgamation in 1966 in which Windsor annexed portions of the surrounding townships, plans for an expressway along the corridor were first conceived.[2] The original plans for the expressway dating back to 1969 were for it to travel from current County Road 22, heading west along the southern edge of Belle River and Tecumseh, meeting up with the current two-lane freeway alignment (Pike Creek Bypass) just east of Puce, continuing as a freeway (without traffic lights at intersections, but with interchanges), and south through Lasalle down to just north of Amherstburg.[3]

The first stage of construction began in 1970 to bridge the two sections of E.C. Rowe Avenue over the CN railway line between Dougall Avenue (then Highway 3B) and Howard Avenue (a former alignment of Highway 2.[4] By 1975 this work was completed, and new contracts were awarded to extend the new divided expressway east to Walker Avenue the following year.[5] At the request of Ford Motor Company of Canada, construction on the expressway was soon accelerated. By 1980, the existing construction contracts were completed, and work began to connect the expressway between Huron Church Road and Dougall Avenue.[6] By April 1982, the expressway was complete between Huron Church Road and the Lauzon Parkway, connecting with Highway 2 east of there as a Super Two.[7]

On May 7, 1986, the final contracts to complete the expressway began. Overpasses were yet to be constructed at Huron Church Road and Dominion Boulevard.[citation needed] On April 1, 1997, the province fully transferred ownership and responsibility for the route to the City of Windsor.[8]

Future[edit]

On Friday, November 7, 2008 the Windsor Star reported on plans to begin assessments on the widening and expansion of EC Row's eastern extension, County Road 22. Under the new plans, the highway would be widened to six lanes from Banwell Road to Lakeshore Road, just east of Manning Rd. There will be grade separations and subsequent on-ramps at Lesperance Rd and a newly widened Manning Rd. The province has already begun to widen and upgrade County Rd 22 between Lakeshore and Patillo roads. This decision came in light of major commercial, residential and industrial development in Windsor's eastern suburbs and the anticipated growth along the Manning Road corridor and the north shore of Essex County.

The most under-used section of the E.C. Row Expressway will undergo a complete reconstruction as part of the Windsor-Essex Parkway development, expected to begin in 2011. The section of roadway between Huron Church Rd and its western terminus at Ojibway Parkway will be merged with a newly built Highway 401 leading to a future bridge to Detroit. The new bridge will be in Windsor's Brighton Beach area; the new highway will go west following E.C. Row Expressway's current route and break south along what is now Huron Church and Talbot Roads. The six-lane Highway 401 will lie in between E.C. Row's east and westbound lanes and they will have direct connections to one another. E.C. Row will remain two lanes in either direction and will join its current roadbed just east of Huron Church Rd.

Exit list[edit]

The following table lists the major junctions along E. C. Row Expressway, as noted by the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario.[9] The entire route is located in Windsor, Ontario

km[9] Mile Destinations Notes
E.C. Row Expressway continues south as Ojibway Parkway towards Amherstburg
0.0 0.0 Ojibway Parkway Former terminus of Highway 18
0.6 0.4 Matchette Road Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
 Highway 401 (Herb Gray Parkway) Under construction; westbound entrance and eastbound exit
2.7 1.7 Huron Church Road - Ambassador Bridge to USA Formerly Highway 3
4.2 2.6 Dominion Boulevard
5.3 3.3 Dougall Avenue
6.1 3.8 Howard Avenue
8.3 5.2 Walker Road Westbound exit via Central Avenue
9.3 5.8 Central Avenue
11.9 7.4 Jefferson Boulevard Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
13.0 8.1 Lauzon Parkway
15.4 9.6 Banwell Road At-grade intersection
E.C. Row Expressway continues east as Pike Creek Bypass (Essex County Road 22) towards Tecumseh
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
  •       Unopened

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Fear, Jonathan (August 15, 1974). "Passing Lanes May Become Common on Ontario Highways". The Globe and Mail 131 (38,902) (Toronto). p. 4. 
  2. ^ a b Tofflemire, John D (February 2009). The Windsor – Detroit Border: Significant Developments in the Last Half Century of the Windsor Gateway (Report). University of Windsor. p. 1–2.
  3. ^ a b Meridian Planning Consultants (2004). Planning Study: Non-Railway Uses of Railway Lands (Report). City of Windsor. p. 4. http://www.citywindsor.ca/DisplayAttach.asp?AttachID=1273. Retrieved June 29, 2011.
  4. ^ Department of Highways (1971–72). Highway Construction Program (Report). Government of Ontario. p. xx.
  5. ^ Ministry of Transportation and Communications (1976–77). Construction Program (Report). Government of Ontario. p. ix.
  6. ^ Ministry of Transportation and Communications (1980–81). Construction Program (Report). Government of Ontario. p. VIII.
  7. ^ Ministry of Transportation and Communications (April 1982). Construction Program, 1982–83 (Report). Government of Ontario. p. VIII.
  8. ^ Highway Transfers List (Report). Ministry of Transportation of Ontario. April 1, 1997. p. 9.
  9. ^ Google Inc. "E.C. Row Expressway length and route". Google Maps (Map). Cartography by Google, Inc. http://g.co/maps/xqj6f. Retrieved June 16, 2011.