The summer construction season just got busier in Woolwich, as council last week approved a series of road and sidewalk projects.
The township awarded a $156,000 contract to Duncor Enterprises that will see work done on several tar-and-chip roads, some of them badly in need of resurfacing. Scheduled for this summer are Pine Creek and Village View roads near Maryhill; Gerrat Drive near St. Jacobs; streets in the older section of St. Jacobs, including Queensway Drive, Highcrest Lane, and Isabella, Front, Albert, Cedar, Hachborn, Princess and Adam streets; and Allan and Geddes streets in Winterbourne.
Dan Kennaley, director of engineering and planning, said this year’s projects will see the use of two newer surface treatment technologies that should make for better, more durable roads.
A new kind of material, called type 3 micro surface, will be used in the urban applications. The material helps fill in some minor rutting and improve overall road profile. As well, there will be no loose aggregate and the surface colour will be black, looking more like asphalt, he said in a report to council.
- Advertisement -
“The darker colour associated with these surfaces will also be a benefit during the winter season by absorbing heat more readily, which will help the surfaces melt off quicker.”
While councillors had no issues with the projects, the funding model proposed by staff led to some debate.
Facing a projected deficit of $329,000 in the 2014 snow-clearing budget, a 53-per-cent overage, Kennaley suggested $145,000 budgeted for surface treatment projects be reallocated to the winter control budget and, rather than scrapping the road projects, a corresponding amount be drawn from the township’s infrastructure reserve fund to pay for the roadwork.
“The infrastructure reserve fund … is not a piggybank we can dip into,” said Coun. Mark Bauman, who expressed concerns the move was essentially using the fund to pay for winter control.
It would set a bad precedent in case of worse winters ahead, he said, suggesting the money be loaned from the fund, to be paid back within two years.
Coun. Allan Poffenroth, agreed with Bauman, calling for, as he has in the past, a review of the snow-clearing budget to find efficiencies and scale back the operation.
“We do too much when it comes to winter maintenance.”
Chief administrative officer David Brenneman, however, argued the solution was a prudent way to deal with a large deficit while maintaining road projects.
“This is the best way to ensure we don’t end the year in a bad situation,” he said of the winter control budget.
Council agreed to reduce crack sealing of roads by $10,000 and to reallocate $29,400 from a roads needs study to the winter control budget.
Things went more smoothly when discussing the sidewalk projects for 2014.
The township awarded a $68,500 contract to GJR Construction Ltd. to carry out work on sidewalks on Maryhill Road and St. Charles Street West in Maryhill, and Wyatt Street and Park Avenue West in Elmira. As well, a new sidewalk will be installed on Joseph Street, extending the safe walkway adjacent to Breslau Public School, with $25,000 drawn from the development charges reserve fund to cover 70 per cent of the cost of the project, associated with growth in the village.
That, in turn, allows for $25,000 to be reallocated towards another construction project approved last week, the replacement of a culvert on Durst Road.
The township will pay Drexler Construction Ltd. $230,000 to replace the structure, located approximately a kilometre north of Lobsinger Line.
While the project had a budget of $202,400, the total cost came in at $244,214. The $42,000 deficit is to be covered by an expected surplus of $25,000 from the sidewalk projects and further $17,000 from the infrastructure reserve fund.