Project Description

Union Pearson Express

Transportation – Toronto, Ontario

Durisol is proud to have been chosen to design and supply a series of custom wall patterns for Metrolinx’s Union Pearson Express (UP Express) rail line. The Union Pearson Express was commissioned to easily transport visitors between Toronto Pearson International Airport and Toronto’s Union Station for the 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games. The 23.3 kilometer rail line was initially projected to carry 2.35 million passengers annually, but this number is expected to grow to over 5 million. With trains passing through residential and commercial properties every 15 minutes, Metrolinx was forced to attenuate the additional noise generated from this busy corridor. Evidently, noise barriers played a crucial part in this project.

Durisol was approached by the client to engineer multiple custom wall designs in what would turn out to be the largest noise abatement project ever in North America. Over 10,000 linear meters of custom Durisol panels and transparent ACRYLITE® Soundstop sheets were installed along the UP Express rail corridor.

In order to bring the client’s vision from concept to reality, Durisol designed new noise barrier patterns and created new wall moulds. An attractive “grasslands” pattern (viewed from the residential side) features green and orange grass blades embedded into the surface of the wall. A unique feature to this wall segment is the addition of trellis wires anchored to the wall, which allows vegetation to climb up the wires. Additionally, the integration of transparent ACRYLITE panels mounted on top of the wall creates the appearance of a reduced wall height and allows sunlight into residential properties.

Project Details

The “ribbon” pattern (viewed from the rail side) provided Durisol with the exciting and challenging opportunity to design custom trapezoidal panels providing sufficient bearing to support the ACRYLITE transparent system above. The continuous “ribbon” pattern features green and orange Vertical Ribs imitating a moving ribbon along the corridor.

The “filmstrip” pattern is another unique vision made real by Durisol. Custom Horizontal Rib patterned panels encase rectangular coloured sheets of ACRYLITE Soundstop with detailed vertical lines throughout. This design was created to emulate the appearance of strips of film.

A large section of the corridor consists of full height transparent panels from 5-6 meters high, set on custom ribbed panels. Multiple sheets of various colours and bird striping complete the look for this wall section.

An interesting aspect of this project is the use of plain concrete panels along a section of the corridor that allowed local artists to paint murals and bring the artistic culture of Toronto to the wall.

Lastly, Durisol’s standard Basket Weave pattern was featured in various sections throughout the corridor.

Through collaboration and innovation, Durisol succeeded in providing exceptional noise abatement and delivering the custom vision of the client. This project not only is the first of its kind in Canada, but also marks a step in the right direction for custom architectural noise walls in North America.

Project Team

OWNER: Metrolinx

CONTRACTOR: The Miller Group (Formerly Brennan Paving Ltd.)

INSTALLATION CONTRACTOR: Powell Contracting Ltd.

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