Brookdale Avenue trees replaced by city after contractor failed to honour warranty: Fawthrop

In this July 2020, file photo, a dead tree along Brookdale Avenue in Cornwall, Ont. is marked with red paint signalling its future replacement. The city says it had to replace over 70 trees after a contractor failed to honour a warranty. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

CORNWALL – Cornwall’s infrastructure manager says the city had to spend over $20,000 on Brookdale Avenue trees that died because a contractor didn’t honour a warranty.

Roughly 70 trees along the edges of Brookdale Avenue from Water Street to the Rotary Traffic Circle died in the winter of 2018-2019.

Michael Fawthrop said in July 2019 that those trees would be replaced under warranty that fall but it wouldn’t be until July 2020 when Acting Infrastructure General Manager Bill de Wit told city council that it would be coming out of the city’s pocket because the warranty expired.

“There were trees that were covered under warranty and the contractor has not replaced those trees. The city has gone and replaced any outstanding trees that needed to be replaced,” Fawthrop told Cornwall Newswatch.

He says the city still had money from the revitalization portion of the $75 million federal government bridge development project. But the city will be taking action against the contractor.

“We did have remaining budget within the project but we are currently following our procurement policies and procedures in dealing with the matter,” he said.

A total of 73 trees cost over $20,000.

Dying grass along the edges of Brookdale Avenue will be addressed this spring.

“We’re going to come back in the spring and look to see how we can improve some of the areas on each side of the roadway. If we are placing new sod, we want to place it in spring…because we want to give it as much time to establish roots,” Fawthrop said.

The new trees planted just before this winter began have a new two-year warranty.