It's been on the books for, well, ever, and it was a promise made by the provincial Liberals in the 2011 election campaign (that's two campaigns ago for those keeping score at home), but now it looks like the expansion of Highway 7 between Guelph and Kitchener is set to begin sometime later this month.
In an article in the Waterloo Region Record over the weekend, officials with the Ministry of Transportation said that some advanced construction will begin this summer starting with the widening of the Guelph Street overpass on the Kitchener end of things. According to senior engineer Bob Bakalarczyk, all the 80 pieces of private property need for the project have been officially acquired so construction can get underway in the immediate future.
A completion date is rather infirm, but it is the hope of the ministry that construction will be finished by 2018. So when it's all said and done, it will have taken the Highway 7 expansion almost 30 years to go from proposal to completion.
It's a busy time in Kitchener-Waterloo for construction projects already. Many portions of the tri-cities' main arteries are shutdown for ION construction, the new light rail transit option that is scheduled to begin service sometime in 2017.
There's no word yet on when or where Highway 7 construction might affect the Guelph end of the equation.