Utility Relocation – Making Way for the Stations


Before we can dig the underground stations, we have to move the utilities that are in the way. The scope varies, but is largest at the cut-and-cover stations.  The cut-and-cover method requires shoring around the perimeter of the station boxes, to support surrounding buildings and ground during excavation. To safely perform the shoring work, crews must clear the area of any underground utilities, and make sure overhead utilities are out of reach of onsite cranes.

Our first step is locating the utilities by drilling boreholes, surveying and mapping. Once located and mapped, our engineers work with utility companies and design a plan for removal and relocation.

Bell Utility Work at Chaplin Station

Once the design is in place and permits approved, relocation of utilities begins.  Crews break open and re-route underground phone lines encased in duct banks, and install new cables. Piped utilities such as a gas mains are exposed, cut-and-capped or rerouted.  Overhead hydro cables, are moved to alternate, new or temporary poles, or relocated underground. Sewers are demolished, re-routed and replaced. During work, we maintain service as much as possible, and after we’re done, new, upgraded infrastructure is in place. 

Outages are sometimes required so we can safely switch to new infrastructure, which is the last step of work.  For example, a temporary water shut-off may be required, or a short power outage may be required while crews switch over to a new transformer.

We give notice of planned outages to affected properties at least 48 hours in advance.

Visit our website for more information about ongoing utilities relocation work at various station locations along the Crosstown corridor.