A transformative step towards infrastructure enhancement
submitted by Jill Sturdy, Municipality of NG
On Wednesday, December 6, 2023, during its regularly scheduled Committee of the Whole meeting of the United Counties, the long-awaited tender for the County Road 43 Rehabilitation Project was recommended for approval to Counties Council next week.
The tender for this important rehabilitation project was issued to a list of prequalified contractors on September 27, 2023 and closed on November 14, 2023. R.W. Tomlinson Limited submitted the lowest bid at a value of $38.9 million dollars.
As a joint project between the Municipality of North Grenville and the United Counties, North Grenville will be responsible for approximately 23 percent of the expenditures, with the United Counties assuming the remaining amount. A grant of approximately $8.3 million was secured through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to offset the total $50 million price tag.
In response to the news, Mayor of North Grenville Nancy Peckford who also serves as Warden shared the following: “The plans for the County Road 43 Rehabilitation Project are a reflection of the shared dedication of the United Counties and the Municipality of North Grenville to crucial improvements to our joint infrastructure, not just in North Grenville but throughout the Counties. The significant improvement and expansion of this extremely busy regional thoroughfare between Colonnade and CR 44 in the Town of Kemptville will ensure better traffic flows, enable major commercial activity and a much safer road experience for drivers, pedestrians and cyclists. The replacement of the current bridge with a four-lane one is also necessary given excessive wear and tear due to exceedingly high traffic volumes. Collectively, these improvements will contribute to strong economic development in North Grenville and the Counties for the decades ahead.”
“I would like to thank MPP Steve Clark and my Counties colleagues from neighbouring municipalities for their steadfast support. Given that CR 43 is one of the busiest regional roads in Leeds and Grenville, these improvements will have very positive economic and safety impacts for the decades to come,” Peckford added.
Yesterday’s recommendation for approval by Counties’ Committee of the Whole marks a significant milestone in a multi-year effort that has included securing funding from three levels of government, several studies and numerous land parcel acquisitions.
It has required the key support of local MPP Steve Clark who expressed his unwavering support for the CR 43 Rehabilitation Project since 2018. Former provincial Minister McNaughton, as well as former federal ministers Catherine McKenna and Maryam Monsef were also key to approving a joint federal – provincial $8.3 million grant under the Improving Canada’s Infrastructure Project.
The ten Mayors at the Counties Council table have also relied heavily on the expertise of several Counties and municipal staff who have guided the project’s development since 2018.
The expansion will include crucial improvements to approximately 2 kilometres of road which will be twinned into a four-lane boulevard between CR 44 and the Colonnade Shopping district, plus a new four lane bridge on CR 43 where the existing two lane one currently exists. The bridge and the road have both reached end of life and are in urgent need of replacement.
In addition, there will be four new roundabouts and multi-use pathways on both sides of the road to facilitate optimal traffic flows in this busy commercial corridor which also features a large daycare, a long term care home and high school as well as safe pedestrian crossings.
Pending final approval by Counties Council on December 14th, the project is scheduled to commence in 2024 with regular updates being provided to keep the community informed about timelines, progress and potential impacts.
There will be a dedicated website, a local liaison committee of businesses and other stakeholders, live camera feeds, and a robust communications strategy about traffic disruptions, potential road closures, public notices, a construction schedule, a map of the project, an FAQs page, a contacts page and a links page.
The tender was recommended to Committee of the Whole on December 6th for approval after a comprehensive review process that included rigorous pre-qualification screening. Counties staff were confident in recommending R.W. Tomlinson Limited which submitted the lowest bid, and met the high bar required for the largest road project in Counties history.