By David F. Rooney
The province will definitely contribute to the cost of fixing the problems associated with the Victoria Road junction with the Trans-Canada Highway, Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Todd Stone said Friday, June 24.
“We’re committed to working with the City on this,” he said in a telephone interview after meeting with members of City Council. “Without a fix congestion is only going to grow. We’ll be there as a partner.”
Mayor Mark McKee, who was out of town and did not meet with Stone, and members of Council hope the province will contribute financially to the project.
“It would be absolutely fantastic if the province contributed to project costs,” Acting Mayor Scott Duke said after the lunch-hour meeting he and Councillor Connie Brothers had with Stone.
Brothers, too, was impressed by Stone.
“He was very interested in our community,” she said. “He asked a lot of question and was apparent to me that his interest was genuine.”
Stone said he’d like to see semi-final or final project designs brought before the public. As well, although he said the ministry will contribute financially the size of that contribution will remain an open question until he and his officials see the final designs and its final cost estimates.
So far, consultants from McElhanney have told Council that it could cost $1.7 million to solve the major congestion issues that exist between Victoria Road’s intersection with the TCH and Wright Street. That $1.7 million estimate includes a $285,000 contingency fund. This project includes a roundabout at Wright Street and reconfiguring the entrances and exits to the Tim Hortons/Shell/Super 8 complex on the east side of Victoria Road well as those to the McDonalds/A&W/Petro-Canada-Starbucks on the west by next summer. Please click here to read our last story about City Council’s discussion of this issue. It includes video.
Stone also told Councillors at the meeting that, in other related ministry news, 60 kilometres of
the badly pot-holed Highway 23 North is being resurfaced and the Malakwa Bridge project was completed on Friday, June 24.
The next project in this area will be the $38 million replacement of the North Fork Bridge which is 32 kilometres west of town. The province is spending about $25 million and the Ottawa is contributing $13 million.