Mudslide from watermain break closes subway

A watermain break early this morning caused a mudslide at the Portage Avenue underpass, closing it to traffic.
But Operations and Facilities manager Doug Brown said today that the north-south route should be re-opened before the sun sets this evening.
“We were notified around 2 a.m. this morning that there was water leaking out of the ground and that a watermain break had caused this mudslide,” Brown noted around 10 a.m., adding the cause hadn’t been determined yet.
“By the end of the day, hopefully, we’ll have the watermain repaired. [But] I’m not guaranteeing anything because I don’t know what the problem is,” he added.
“If it’s busted underneath the track, it’ll taker a little bit longer.
“I don’t want to say we’ll have everything up and running. But by the end of the day here, we should be able to have the underpass open,” Brown remarked.
He noted the debris from the mudslide was getting cleaned up as quickly as possible.
“We’ve got to get that out of there,” Brown stressed. “It goes into our pumps—the sand’s not good for the pumps. So we’ve got clean up all that now.”
Brown stressed that until the underpass is re-opened, all traffic going between the north and south end must use McIrvine Road.
“Victoria Avenue is not open to the general public—it is only to be used by emergency vehicles when the subway is impassable. That’s what it says in the agreement with CN,” he remarked.
“I want to make sure everyone’s going to McIrvine.”
Brown noted the damage caused by the watermain break, and subsequent mudslide, was not too serious, and did not compromise the structural integrity of the underpass itself.
“CN has already looked at the track and they think their structure is fine,” he said, adding there has been a “slow order” for trains going over the bridge while the clean-up and watermain repairs continue.

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