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Uptown Streetscape Improvement

A man and woman wearing hardhats

The city, in collaboration with the Region of Waterloo, is initiating an streetscape improvement project for King Street North in our uptown core from Central Street to just south of Erb Street. This project has several objectives:

  • To make King Street more accessible for all modes of transportation, including pedestrians
  • To create a streetscape environment that offers a safe, lively, accessible and attractive place to work, live, shop, learn and play
  • To co-ordinate streetscape design elements and improve the quality of business and economic life in uptown Waterloo

Work being done includes the replacement of underground infrastructure (stormwater, sanitary sewers, watermain and underground utilities, reconstruction of the roadway to two lanes with segregated bike lanes on King Street and wider sidewalks, adding new pedestrian-centric street lights, trees, landscaping and street furniture.

Construction update - September, 2017

Weather and construction delays have impacted the contractor's progress on King Street and work that began in April on King Street, north of the Erb Street intersection to the centre line of the Bridgeport intersection, is now expected to be open to northbound traffic by the end of October with King Street fully open to two-way traffic by mid-November, concurrently with the King Street and Erb Street intersection.

These delays have impacted the second stage of this project on King Street from the ION tracks to the Erb Street intersection and Erb Street between the entrance to Waterloo Town Square to the King Street intersection. This work commenced on July 26, 2017 following the UpTown Waterloo Jazz Festival and completion of the road paving at the Erb Street and Caroline intersection.

Upon commencement of the second stage of work (see the map below), the contractor experienced additional delays at the King Street and Erb Street intersection with the installation of a deep sanitary sewer. This sewer work is complete and the contractor is continuing with the remaining underground services on King Street and Erb Street. It's anticipated that paving will proceed in stage two of the project in mid-November.  

Uptown businesses are open and accessible and pedestrian access will be maintained. To note:

  • The parking lot entrance and exit to Waterloo Town Square's north lot will be maintained off of Caroline and Erb. One entrance/exit from Erb, either at Angie's Kitchen or the Atrium, will be available at all times. This entrance/exit will alternate as work progresses.
  • The two-way detour on Bridgeport will be extended to Albert Street for this stage.
  • During this time, one lane of traffic will be provided on Erb Street to allow vehicular access to Albert Street from Erb Street.

Getting Around

This map indicates the limits of work for this stage of the project, and the detour for motorists to get around the work area. Detour signs will be posted for motorists during stage two work and pedestrian access will be maintained. To view available parking see this parking map.

  • Heading east on Erb you can use Albert to head north, or Caroline to William to King to head south.
  • Heading north or south on King you can use Regina to get around from either William or Bridgeport. (this is the same detour that has been in place for Stage one).

Below are two renderings of the finished uptown streetscape.

Rendering of King Street

Rendering of King Street streetscape design

Map of uptown streetscape construction phases


The first stage of construction started on April 17 on King Street north of the Erb Street intersection to the centre line of the Bridgeport intersection. This map outlines the construction taking place including a temporary detour on Bridgeport Road. To view available parking in the area, see this parking map. Pedestrian access will be maintained to residential/commercial properties at all times, except when short-term closures are required during non-peak times of the day for sidewalk work across building entrances. Vehicular traffic will not be allowed on these sections of King Street and Erb Street due to the extent of underground work taking place.

The second stage of work is scheduled to start in early summer and includes work on Erb Street from the entrance to Waterloo Town Square to the west side of the King street intersection, followed by work starting in mid-July on King Street from ION tracks to the Erb Street intersection.

The third and final stage of work includes work to be completed on King Street from Elgin street To Bridgeport Road. All construction is expected to be completed by early November. A second phase of streetscape improvement will begin in 2019 and will include the area on King Street from Elgin Street to University Avenue.

Public engagement

April 13, 2017 meeting with the UpTown BIA - The City of Waterloo, in conjunction with the Region of Waterloo, hosted an information meeting with local businesses to share timelines and construction details. The following documents pertain to this meeting:

  • Public information package delivered to area residents, businesses and individuals who attended previous information centres on this subject  This notice included details and timing of the construction.
  • Presentation boards used at the meeting with information about the final design, scheduling and a review of how vehicular and pedestrian traffic will be impacted during construction.  

Jan. 31, 2017 public information centre - The City of  Waterloo, in conjunction with the Region of Waterloo, hosted a public information centre to share final design details for the proposed improvements to King Street and the construction timing of the project. In addition, traffic flow plans during construction were shared. The following documents pertain to this information centre:

Please note: The City of Waterloo strives to make all of its services accessible to all, including this website. Some of the documents on this page were prepared by a third-party consultant and may be inaccessible in their current format. If you would like any of these documents in an alternate format, please contact the project manager using the information at the top of this page.

Additional information

Should you have any questions or concerns about this project, please contact Eric Saunderson, senior project manager, Region of Waterloo, 519-575-4746 or