Contractor paying to upgrade north section of County Road 1

SD&G Engineer Ben de Haan (inset) shows the 1.3 kilometer section of County Road 1 in North Dundas that will be upgraded to allow a quarry operator to run fully loaded trucks during the spring half-load season. The company is paying for the work. The presentation was made Monday, May 19, 2020. (SD&G via Newswatch Group)

SD&G – A Kemptville contractor will be paying nearly $28,000 to upgrade a section of County Road 1 near the municipal border to allow it to run fully loaded trucks from its quarry during the spring half-load season.

County council signed off on the agreement last week with Willis Kerr Contracting to the rebuild of County Road 1 from French Settlement Road to the City of Ottawa boundary.

The additional work on the 1.3 kilometer piece of road at Reids Mills, north of Hallville, will cost $27,800.

While the company would have liked to just improve the section from its quarry to the Ottawa boundary (500 meters at approximately $17,000), the county insisted that the roadwork be done to French Settlement Road (1.3 kilometers) as it manages road infrastructure in sections.

County councillors from North Dundas, like Al Armstrong, are concerned that it will open the door to heavy spring truck traffic on French Settlement Road, which is a township road.

“Those trucks are heavy trucks and there will be heavier traffic on French Settlement Road. If it starts to be crumbled underneath the weights and especially the corners, who’s going to be responsible for that? We’re not really interested in opening (that road to heavy loads),” Armstrong said.

County Engineer Ben de Haan said the company’s motive was to open access north to the City of Ottawa and have “no interest in entering on to French Settlement Road to get up to the boundary.” He said the township could negotiate a road improvement agreement similar to what the county is doing for access for other quarries.

Coun. Steven Byvelds (South Dundas) says the county should review its road work in the future to see if half-load roads can be identified and improved while work is being done. “If all we have to do is add another 10 millimeters of asphalt to a road that might be something that council might want to look at or even work with a proponent along those roads.

Byvelds noted some spring problems with a South Dundas grain elevator that was taking “some shortcuts” using County Road 18 to Highway 401 – a road that is probably “not up to spec.”

The arrangement is similar to what Cornwall Gravel did on Headline Road (County Road 44) in 2018.

The paving should start in two weeks.

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