CORNWALL – A project to rehabilitate one of the busiest county road bridges in SDG County will move forward this year.
At a special meeting of SDG County Council, councillors approved a $973,000 bid by Dalcon Constructors Ltd to rehab the County Road 31 bridge over the Canadian Pacific railway line in Winchester.
Dalcon was the lowest of six contractors who bid on the project, which county Transportation and Planning Services Director Benjamin deHaan called a competitive bidding process.
“[It was] a very competitive bid with lots of contractors looking at it,” he said announcing that the project was $440,000 under budget.
Citing a lack of provincial highway bridge contracts in 2021, deHaan said that bridge contractors were ‘hungry’ for the work.
Councillor Tony Fraser (North Dundas) said it was good to hear that the overpass project was going ahead.
“Every time I look at it, I think it has gotten worse,” he said. “The falling concrete, the parging missing and the rebar exposed, it puts great concern on lots of us.”
Once the rehab project is underway, traffic on the bridge will be reduced to one lane. Vehicles, including agricultural equipment, that are over 3.6 metres wide, will have to follow a detour via County Roads 38 and 3 through Inkerman.
Work is expected to begin on the project in the next week or so.
During the June 7 council meeting discussion about the new Morrisburg roundabout, Councillor Kirsten Gardner (South Dundas) asked about the maintenance differences between the existing Iroquois roundabout and the two roundabouts in Long Sault. Morrisburg will be the fourth roundabout added.
“If you look at the Iroquois roundabout compared to the two South Stormont roundabouts the difference is night and day in the visual aspect of maintenance,” Gardner said. “Our Iroquois residents have just felt neglected in how [the roundabout] appears. There needs to be fairness and consistency.”
deHaan responded that there had been a discussion in the previous term of council about maintenance roles but that he welcomed further discussion about that.
“If we want to create some clear direction for us and local municipalities in terms of who does what, I’m totally for that,” deHaan said.
Landscape maintenance issues have been the subject of many complaints by Iroquois residents since its completion in 2017.
In recent years, some Iroquois residents have volunteered their time to clean up the weeds at the Iroquois roundabout.
SDG Counties approved a motion to waive permit fees for restaurants and bars on county roads that wanted to apply to have a patio.
Application fees were waived in 2020 during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Seeing as businesses are still facing restrictions due to the three-step provincial reopening plan, council unanimously approved waiving the application fees again this year.
Council also approved the $164,089 bid by Aqua Drain Sewer Services Inc. for cured-in-place culvert lining services for 13 culverts in the county. The lining work helps extend the service life of existing culverts and is regular work tendered by SDG’s Transportation and Planning department.
Phillip Blancher, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Morrisburg Leader