Resource item

The extension of the cycle path, an expensive budget item


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It will be that time of year again.

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With the colorful leaves and spiced pumpkin slats, we’re talking about the annual municipal budget.

While the board approved the budget at the end of 2021, discussions normally begin around this time of year, with final decisions in December or January.

At this week’s finance committee meeting, staff will present a series of business cases for the board as they work to finalize the 2022 budget. The two costliest business cases that will be presented are the extension of the Paris-Notre Dame cycle path from rue Wilma to the Pont des Nations; and the renewal of infrastructure along municipal road 55 and Lorne Street.

The bike path project, which is expected to cost taxpayers $ 2.2 million in 2022, will eventually link the Notre Dame-Lasalle intersection to Walford Road.

“The installation of this segment of the Paris-Notre-Dame cycle path will form a continuous and physically separate connection from Walford Road to LaSalle Boulevard for people who cycle, thus providing better opportunities for people to choose to cycle. for the purposes of commuting, recreation or tourism, ”said staff report indicates.

The city has completed the section from Lasalle Boulevard to Wilma Street and there is some infrastructure around Bell Park. Extending the bike path to the Pont des Nations in 2022 would make Greater Sudbury more bike-friendly and could encourage more people to commute.

“The corridor from rue Paris to avenue Notre-Dame, recommended as a short-term priority in the transport master plan, will be an 8.6 km cycle path separated by sidewalks that will form the north-south backbone. of the city’s growing commuter cycling network, ”the report notes. “The COVID-19 pandemic has increased interest in cycling for utility and recreational purposes. … To build on this momentum and help increase the proportion of people in Greater Sudbury who choose to use a bicycle as a form of transportation with the goal of achieving CEEP Goal 8 of achieving a share modal rate of 35 percent by active mobility by 2050, it is essential to continue investing in the construction of the recommended cycling infrastructure network as outlined in the transport master plan.

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In July, the federal government announced funding for active transportation projects. Staff say the bike path could be a good candidate. This section of the bike path will cost a total of $ 5.5 million, but with more than $ 3 million available in grants, taxpayers will only be responsible for $ 2.2 million. This represents an impact of 0.73 percent on the tax levy.

“The federal government released the country’s first national active transportation strategy and announced the creation of the Active Transportation Fund, an investment of $ 400 million over five years to fund up to 60% (federal contribution) of projects capital assets that expand and improve transportation networks in communities of all types and sizes across Canada, ”the report notes. “The Paris-Notre-Dame cycle path is expected to be an excellent candidate for a successful application for this program, as it meets a number of project eligibility criteria for the fund and is ready to go. “

Staff also recommend that Council consider further infrastructure work along Lorne Street and RM 55, at a cost of nearly $ 1.5 million.

“The municipal road 55 / Lorne Street renewal project will consist of the renewal and rehabilitation of the Elm Street to Power Street corridor, with the exception of the recently improved section between Logan Avenue and Martindale Road” , indicates the report. “MR 55 / Lorne Street is a thoroughfare that connects the communities of Whitefish, Naughton, Lively and Copper Cliff to the downtown area and has an average daily traffic volume of approximately 20,000 vehicles. It is a key commercial and industrial transportation route, one of the five main links to the provincial road network and represents a gateway to the community.

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As staff note, the underground infrastructure – water pipes and sewers – has passed its useful life and requires remedial work, including “the expansion of the water pipe infrastructure as it is. recommended by the master plan for water and wastewater to improve hydraulics in the region ”.

Staff expect all phases of the project to be ready for tender by the end of this year. Although not very glamorous, it is important work.

“Maintenance costs exceed acceptable standards and the asset is performing less well than expected. The deterioration is evident. The city has the opportunity to improve and improve other aspects, such as pedestrian safety and improved public transport, ”the report notes. “Health and safety is also a very important factor in the recommended action. The recommendation addresses pedestrian safety with the installation of active transportation improvements, as well as intersection improvements. “

The entire project is estimated at $ 69 million; however, provincial and federal funds are available. Of this, the city currently has $ 10.8 million budgeted.

“This request concerns the balance of the financing. For the roads part, the cash flow represents a need of 5.4 million dollars for 2022, a need of 19 million dollars for 2023 and a need of 20 million dollars for 2024 ”, notes the report. “For the water and wastewater portion, cash flow represents a requirement of $ 13.7 million. Of this total, the water portion represents a requirement of $ 2.6 million in 2022 and $ 6.5 million in 2024 (totaling $ 9.1 million). The wastewater portion represents $ 1.1 million in 2022 and $ 3.5 million in 2024 (totaling $ 4.6 million). The city recommends the use of debt financing, which is equivalent to $ 3.9 million per year for 20 years.

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This project would have an impact of 0.49 percent on the tax levy.

“The first phase of construction is proposed for 2022 on Lorne Street from Kelly Lake Road to Webbwood Drive and includes the replacement of the storm sewer from Lorne Street to Junction Creek,” the report notes. “If the additional road budget request for 2022 is not approved by council, staff request permission to use the existing approved road budget for this project in order to proceed with the necessary replacement / rehabilitation of the storm sewer outlets. from Lorne Street to Junction Creek. A failure of part of this storm sewer occurred near the railway tracks in September 2020 with temporary repairs carried out; It is recommended that the permanent replacement / repair of the storm system exit from Lorne Street to Junction Creek take place in 2022.

The business cases that will go to the board next week cost just over $ 6.2 million, collectively. In 2021, the board approved an operating budget of approximately $ 630 million and a capital budget of $ 134 million. Almost half of that – $ 57 million – was spent on roads and drainage.

In addition to the aforementioned projects, staff will also recommend $ 584,520 to go ahead with the Valley East twin platform; $ 300,000 for phase 2 of the nodes and corridors strategy; nearly $ 200,000 for cleaning the sumps; $ 250,000 for the Lasalle Boulevard Corridor Strategy; approximately $ 156,000 to convert parking lights to LEDs; and $ 110,000 to clean the flour mill silos, in preparation for a celebratory light display.

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“In June 2019, the Flour Mill BIA and Flour Mill CAN approached city staff regarding the celebration of the 111th anniversary of the grain elevators through a display lighting project in 2022. The intention is to project a static display on each of the four sides of the silos using equipment mounted on neighboring structures, ”states the business case. “FM-CAN did not get funding; however, they intend to seek funding for the project from higher levels of government. The group requested that the city finance and complete the preparation of the site in 2021 in anticipation of the launch of the project in 2022. “

Currently, city staff “maintain the fence, clean up the site of household garbage, and remove debris from bricks that have fallen from the silos.”

There is work to be done before the light display can be installed. As staff note, there are health and safety concerns due to weather damage.

“The proposed display lighting work requires that the site be cleaned up with removal of trees and vegetation; fence repair and rework brackets; repairs and sealing of the access to the crawl space; and the removal and descaling of concrete and bulk bricks at height, ”the report reveals. “Removing all the brick and mortar from the top of the silos is a health and safety issue. Heavy storms and windy conditions blow fairly large sections of loose debris out of the silos and sometimes the pieces land beyond the fence, creating a dangerous environment. “

At just 0.04 percent, the impact on the tax levy is minimal for the silo project.

Staff will also present business cases for small businesses to fund public art; organize an open streets event; develop an urban forest master plan; and increase resources for the municipal regreening program.

The finance meeting takes place Tuesday at 4 p.m. The public is invited to webcast the meeting live at tinyurl.com/3duayh76.

[email protected]
Twitter: @marykkeown
Facebook: @mkkeown

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