Work to get underway soon on Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project
Tim Brody - Editor
The Municipality of Sioux Lookout is advising of a disruption in traffic flow this summer as it rebuilds part of Wellington Street at the intersection of Wellington Street and First Avenue South. The Municipality shared with The Bulletin that the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project is slated to start on June 27, however the Municipality advised it is awaiting updates from the Ministry of Transportation regarding any delays due to possible repairs to sections of the by-pass that were underwater, which may alter the June 27 start date. The Ed Ariano By-Pass will be used as a detour while the project is underway. The project is expected to be completed by early October.
The Municipality shared in a June 6 Facebook post that once the project gets underway, “Expect traffic delays, with traffic reduced to one lane during peak time and up to 15 minutes of complete closure in both directions during off-peak hours.”
Work on the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project, which will become a roundabout, will be conducted by Makkinga Contracting and Equipment Rentals.
Public Works and Infrastructure Manager Jeff Hawley shared in a report to council earlier this year, “In September of 2019, the Municipality of Sioux Lookout was successful in applying for funding through the Rural and Northern Funding Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP) for the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection reconstruction Project. The provincial funding for the project was not to exceed 83 percent of the project’s total eligible cost, up to a maximum of $1,605,926.12, and that eligible costs incurred after September 1, 2019 would be eligible for reimbursement through the transfer payment agreement.
“In January of 2020, Council passed By-law No. 14-20 being a By-law to enter into a contract with Keewatin-Aski Limited (KAL) of Sioux Lookout for the detailed designs, specifications, tendering and contract administration for the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project. KAL completed the design and the project was ready for tender for the 2021 construction season. However, due to works being conducted by the Ministry of Transportation (MTO) on the CN overhead (bridge) on Highway 72, known locally as the Ed Ariano Bypass during the summer of 2021, there would not have been adequate capacity to use this corridor as a by-pass for the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project. As such, Council approved delaying the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project until the 2022 construction season. MTOs work on the bypass is projected to be complete by the end of June 2022 and it is felt that this will provide adequate time for completion of the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project.
“On February 17th, 2022, KAL issued a tender invitation for the construction of the Wellington Street and First Avenue Intersection Reconstruction Project on behalf of the Municipality. The tender was posted on the Government Contract Portal, Biddingo. The tender for construction closed on March 10th, 2022 with three (3) bids received, the lowest of which was valued at $2,057,792.50 plus HST.”
The total projected project cost of the project is $2,556,573 breaking down as:
- Grants - $1,605,926 – ICIP Funding
- Municipal - $589,547 – Long Term Debt
- Municipal - $361,100 – Road Reserves
The Municipality of Sioux Lookout has also advised that, “To address safety concerns with high pedestrian volumes, the MTO will be starting work on a set of lights and a pedestrian crosswalk on the south side of Sturgeon River Road and Highway 72.” That project is expected to be completed by early September.