Adrian Tomasini, the operations manager for the Municipality of Hastings Highlands brought forward a report to council at their June 1 meeting. This report entitled “Five Year Capital Bridge/Culvert Structure Plan” outlined a variety of structures within the municipality that needed work within the next five years to safely maintain their usefulness. After discussing this report amongst themselves, council voted to proceed with the five-year capital bridge/culvert structure plan.
According to the Ontario Structure Inspection Manual and the Ontario regulations, every bridge and culvert shall have its structural integrity, safety and condition inspected every two years by a professional engineer. In the fall of 2021, these OSIM inspections were completed in two stages; one for bridges and the other for culverts within Hastings Highlands. D.M. Wills Engineering completed the bridge inspections while Perspective Engineering performed the culvert inspections.
Tomasini told council on June 1 that Hastings Highlands maintains 13 bridges and nine culverts, and the OSIM reporting identified maintenance and structural requirements for these structures.
“The five-year capital bridge plan presented to council has taken into account all necessary maintenance and rehabilitation needs for Hastings Highlands 13 bridge structures and nine structure culverts while trying to keep annual budgetary needs at the forefront,” he says.
This repair work ties in with the Hastings Highlands Strategic Plan, strategic priority #2, with the goal of maintaining roads and bridges. The total five-year capital estimated expenditure for these structural repairs will be $4,235,000. Tomasini noted that council had approved the 2022 structures work as part of the capital budget process. These are; Soble Road Bridge, which requires structural replacement and contract administration for a total cost of $870,000, Bird Lake Road Culvert, which needs structural replacement and tendering/contract administration for a total cost of $175,000 and Grant Road Culvert, which requires structural replacement and tendering/contract administration for a total of $175,000. The grand total for 2022 will come to $1,220,000.
The work required for 2023 will be the Musclow Greenview Road Bridge, which needs slope protection, repaving, tendering/contract administration for a total of $30,000, and Little Papineau Creek Bridge, which requires cap piles, repaving, deck waterproofing, wingwall stabilization, localized deck replacement, deck investigation/design for a total of $600,000. This all comes to a grand total of $630,000.
The work needed for 2024 will be the North Baptiste Lake Road Culvert, which needs structural replacement and tendering/contract administration for a total of $200,000, and the Papineau Lake Road Bridge, which requires waterproofing and repaving, joints replacement, concrete repair, railing, curbs and SBGR replacement, design for a total of $425,000. This all comes to a grand total of $625,000.
For 2025, the work to be undertaken will be the South Papineau Lake Culvert which needs structural replacement and tendering/contract administration for a total of $130,000. The York River Bridge will also be done, with its curbs and barriers being replaced, waterproofing and repaving the deck, replacing the joint seals, design for a total of $550,000. This all comes to a grand total of $680,000.
For 2026, the Boulter Road Bridge is due to be completely replaced, for a total cost of $1,080,000.
At the June 1 meeting, councillor Nancy Matheson spoke first, thanking Tomasini for his report.
“Needless to say, it comes as no surprise as you’ve kept us apprised on the condition of these bridges and culverts on a regular basis. Not only is this necessary as if falls under Ontario regulation 104-97, standards for bridges but also for safety and liability reasons. As stated, council already approved the 2022 structures as part of the capital budget process,” she says.
Deputy mayor Dorothy Gerrow spoke next, also thanking Tomasini for his report.
“It’s clear going forward that budgets in the coming years will have to reflect the figures set out in this report, as they’re legislatively required,” she says.
Councillor Tony Fitzgerald reiterated that these bridges and culverts needed to be inspected every two years.
“As we know from work already lined up for this year, the cost is exorbitant now for all work so proper planning and financial responsibility are paramount and that is the purpose of the five-year plan,” he says.
Councillor Tammy Davis had a question about the Musclow Greenview Bridge, which is due to be worked on next year.
She wondered since it had been hit a number of times, required a lot of repairs, and she thought that a lot of that was due to the size and layout of the bridge, would it be feasible to do a more extensive repair or maybe do a relocation or redesign of the bridge to prevent that. Tomasini replied that it would be very expensive to do more extensive repairs, including relocating it or changing the size and layout of the bridge. He estimated it could anywhere from $800,000 to $2 million or more. He also mentioned that they had put in place measures to mitigate damage to the bridge going forward to reduce costs.
“We have assessed many options with all our bridge structures and roads structures and we tried to present council with the
most cost-effective way of trying to repair our infrastructure. So, this is what we came up with,” he says.
Tomasini revealed to council that the Soble Road Bridge had been tendered out and the work should begin in late August. As for the Grant Road and Bird Lake Road culverts, they were going to be repaired from June 6 to June 17.
Tomasini told The Bancroft Times on June 7 that the capital bridge and structural culvert plan is an integral part of Hastings Highlands’ municipal asset management plan.
“The Soble Road bridge replacement project was awarded to Merol Power Corporation in Barry’s Bay, Ontario, with a tender price of $839,569 plus HST. The structural culverts for Bird Lake Road and Grant Road will not be tendered,” he says. “These structural culverts will be installed using municipal forces.”
Michael Riley, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Bancroft Times