Morrisburg roundabout won’t be built until 2021

This conceptual drawing from consultant WSP as part of an August 2017 report to South Dundas council shows what Morrisburg's main street, County Road 2, might look like near the County Road 31 intersection. (South Dundas via Newswatch Group)

SD&G – At the insistence of South Dundas county council members, SD&G won’t be rushing to try and start construction of a roundabout at County Road 31 and County Road 2 this year.

The discussion came up as staff had asked to hire an outside engineering firm – EVB Engineering – at a weekly rate to complete some of the “minor design issues” because the department is understaffed with the manager of infrastructure position vacant.

“We are challenged to get that out the door,” Planning Director Ben de Haan told council Monday morning of trying to get all the documents ready for tender this year.

But South Dundas county councillors felt it would be better to hold off trying to rush the project this year and get everything for tendering the work next year.

Coun. Steven Byvelds said he would like to be make sure the “project is done right” and the municipality doesn’t want a “construction disaster” that it saw with Lakeshore Drive.

Coun. Kirsten Gardner added that there is already “fatigue around this project” and it would not serving the residents’ best interests or be efficient to drag it out through this year and 2021.

Council still approved the option for the planning department to hire EVB Engineering, should it be needed later this year, at a weekly rate of $2,500 based on the amount of work still needed for the project.

Also on the same project, county council formally approved the agreement with the Ontario and federal governments for the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP) funding for the Morrisburg streetscape project.

The Ontario government is committing just over $1 million and the federal government is putting in $1.5 million.

The project will rebuild 1.2 kilometers of County Road 2 from Allison Avenue to St. Lawrence Street and the construction of the roundabout at County Road 31 intersection.

The entire streetscape project is around $4.2 million.

Coun. Steven Byvelds criticized the county’s communications department for not getting the announcement out before a “keen reporter” at a Morrisburg newspaper figured it out.

“I think a more formal announcement from the counties along with South Dundas would have served us all well. It’s a big project for SD&G and South Dundas. Bragging sometimes is a good thing in this business. We don’t get a lot of accolades. Something we could have done just to make it a little more formal.”

Byvelds is still looking forward to “the golden shovel photo-op.”

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