Highbury Avenue

Highbury Avenue
Wenige Expressway

Formerly Highway 126
Route information
Maintained by City of London
Length 5.0 km (3.1 mi)
History Opened December 9, 1963[1]

(as a two-lane expressway)

Widened in 1966

(to a four-lane, grade-separated expressway)
Major junctions
North end Hamilton Road
  Bradley Avenue

Commissioners Road
South end Wilton Grove Road
Major cities London
Highway system
Roads in Ontario
Ontario municipal expressways (in alphabetical order)
← Harbour Expressway Highbury Avenue Lincoln M. Alexander Parkway →
Former provincial highways
←  Highway 123   Highway 131  →

Highbury Avenue is an arterial road/expressway located in London and St. Thomas, Ontario. The speed limit, on the expressway portion is 100 km/h.[2]

For the citizens who live and work in both cities, Highbury Avenue is considered an essential commuter route between both cities and also to Highway 401 and Highway 402.

Route description [ edit ]

The Highbury Avenue expressway seen from the Commissioners Road overpass looking north and south respectively. The concrete southbound lanes were being rehabilitated at the time these photos were taken.

Highbury Avenue begins at South Edgeware Road in St. Thomas where it proceeds north as a two-lane highway (Elgin County Road 30) until Wilton Grove Road in London. From there it briefly becomes a four-lane, 4.5 km (2.8 mi) expressway north from Highway 401 to Hamilton Road.[3] It then continues north as a four-lane arterial street through the rest of London.

At approximately Fanshawe Park Road, Highbury Avenue continues north from London as a two-lane highway (Middlesex County Road 23), where it ends at Elginfield Road (Highway 7).

History [ edit ]

The expressway portion was completed as such in 1966 after nearly three years as a two-lane road from the 401 northward.[4] This road was originally planned to be completed as part of a network of expressways to serve London along the Thames River. However, local opposition led to this expressway portion of Highbury ending at Hamilton Road.[5] The road was given provincial highway status as Highway 126 on December 9, 1963.[6] For a time the expressway portion of the road inside city limits of the time was unofficially named "George Wenige Expressway" after a former mayor of London, George Wenige. There were also plans to extend the expressway south to St. Thomas, but these plans were shelved.

In 1989, the interchange at the intersection of Bradley Avenue and Highbury was completed. In 1991, responsibility for Highway 126 was transferred from the provincial government to the City of London. Later in 1994, the Highbury Avenue interchange and overpass at Highway 401 was reconstructed. The reconstruction led to the cloverleaf interchange being converted to a Parclo-A4 interchange configuration with traffic lights, no longer being completely controlled-access (freeway-to-freeway).

Major intersections [ edit ]

The following table lists the major intersections along the portion of Highbury Avenue that was once assumed by the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario. The road continues north and south of these points, but distances are not available. The entire route is located within London, Ontario

km[7] mi Destinations Notes
0.0 0.0 County Road 37 (Wilton Grove Road) Widens to four lanes, at-grade intersection, expressway portion begins.
0.8 0.50  Highway 401Windsor, Toronto Parclo A4 interchange (Highbury being at-grade), formerly a cloverleaf interchange. Interchange upgrade expected by 2016 including a wider overpass.
1.8 1.1 Bradley Avenue Folded diamond interchange
4.0 2.5 Commissioners Road Folded diamond interchange. Two additional ramps proposed
5.6 3.5 Hamilton Road At-grade intersection; End of expressway portion
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

The following are intersections along Highbury Avenue's remaining length.

  • 0 - South Edgeware Road
  • 0.70 - Edgeware Line
  • 1.28 - Dennis Road
  • 2.06 - Ron McNeil Line
  • 3.45 - Mapleton Line
  • 4.79 - Ferguson Line
  • 6.17 - Truman Line
  • 7.78 - Webber Bourne (move from Elgin County to City of London)
  • 8.86 - Glanworth Drive
  • 12.90 - Westminster Drive
  • 14.27 - Dingman Drive
  • 15.4 - roadway widens to four lanes, northbound
  • 15.65 - Wilton Grove Road (5.6 km expressway section detailed above, commences)
  • 16.14 to 16.98 - interchange complex, north of which expressway has median ditch
  • 16.51 - bridge over Highway 401
  • 17.57 - Bradley Avenue bridge, at interchange
  • 19.62 - Commissioners Road bridge, at interchange
  • 20.5 - roadway remains four lanes, median ditch replaced by concrete median
  • 20.68 - roadway crosses Thames River
  • 21.31 - Hamilton Road (5.6 km expressway section detailed above, terminates) concrete median ends
  • 22.11 - Trafalgar Street
  • 23.28 - Florence Street
  • 23.56 - Dundas Street
  • 24.91 - Oxford Street
  • 26.29 - Huron Street
  • 29.04 - Fanshawe Park Road
  • 29.5 (approx) - roadway narrows to two lanes
  • 31.15 - London city limits
  • 31.85 - Medway Road, in Ballymote hamlet
  • 38.83 - Plover Mills Road, in Bryanston hamlet
  • 45.59 - terminus at Elginfield Road, Queens Highway 7

References [ edit ]

  1. ^ [ Cultural Heritage Evaluation Report Wenige Expressway Bridge (4-BR-14) Highbury Avenue over the Thames River. pp. 6–13]
  2. ^ Cameron Bevers. "The King's Highway 126". Retrieved November 27, 2010. The four-lane freeway has a 100 km/h speed limit.
  3. ^ Cameron Bevers. "The King's Highway 126". Retrieved November 27, 2010. Highbury Avenue Freeway is still a fully controlled-access route from Hamilton Road to the Highway 401 Interchange.
  4. ^ Cameron Bevers. "The King's Highway 126". Retrieved November 27, 2010. In 1966, the entire section of Highway 126 lying to the south of Hamilton Road was converted into a four-lane controlled-access freeway.
  5. ^ Cameron Bevers. "The King's Highway 126". Retrieved November 27, 2010. During the 1960s, several ambitious plans were developed to construct a series of freeways across London, in order to provide improved connections to Highway 401 from the central and northern half of the city. However, plans to extend the Highway 126 Freeway further north were eventually scrapped.
  6. ^ AADT Traffic Volumes 1955–1969 And Traffic Collision Data 1967–1969. Ontario Department of Highways. 1969. p. 112.
  7. ^ Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (April 1, 1989). Provincial Highways Distance Table. Government of Ontario. p. 85. ISSN 0825-5350.

External links [ edit ]

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