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City’s Infrastructure Capital Plan Progressing Well

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Sterling Enterprises rolled into town last week with the equipment necessary to put the finishing touches on the City of Dauphin’s 2021 infrastructure capital plan.

Crews are currently working on reconstructing a section of Fifth Avenue North East between Second and Third Streets.

“They’ve completed the excavation work and they’re backfilling with base. They hope to have base work done and curb and gutter. I believe they hope to get that started next week,” Director of Public Works and Operations, Mike VanAlstyne said, adding water and sewer infrastructure was renewed on the street last year. “And when they finish that, they will be moving on to Fifth Avenue South East. They’ll go down there and excavate. And that one’s from Main Street to First Avenue.”

The work on Fifth Avenue North East was budgeted at $180,000 while the Fifth Avenue South East project was set at $160,000.

During reconstruction work, VanAlstyne said people may have noticed sidewalks being eliminated on the south or the east side of streets and only being replaced on the west or the north sides.

“The intent is, the funding saved there is going to build new sidewalks where there isn’t any in town yet. Just to expand the pedestrian and active transportation network throughout the community,” VanAlstyne said, adding the maintenance dollars saved will be substantial.

“I believe we have over 65 kilometers of sidewalk in town. So it’s hard to maintain with our current staff load and whatnot.”

The capital plan also calls for reconstruction of a small portion of Wakefield Avenue between Johnson Street and Jackson Street at a cost of $46,000, VanAlstyne said.

“They want to get the reconstruct areas started first and then they’ll move out from there,” he said.

Other work budgetted for includes resurfacing projects on Centennial Drive from Dorothy Street to Park Crescent at a cost of $30,000, Fourth Avenue South East from Second Street to Third Street at a cost of $75,000 and Third Street South East from Fourth Avenue to Sixth Avenue at a cost of $92,000.

Also planned is a mill and overlay project on Dorothy Street from River Avenue to Edward Avenue, new sidewalk on the 200 block of Merrell Avenue at a cost of $22,000 and design and construction of a south end storm drain system at a cost of $300,000.

“The sidewalk on Merrell was constructed earlier this summer.” Vanalstyne said, adding the request for proposals for the storm drain project was just issued last week. “This new RFP is for the detailed design of the south end system, so that’ll be more what gets taken to construction. Construction won’t occur this year, it will be partnered with the (Manitoba Infrastructure) project in the future.”

On the utility side, VanAlstyne said things have been going well with most projects completed or nearing completion.

The utility plan called for water main relining on Mountain Road from First Avenue to Second Avenue at a cost of $50,000, Crocus Bay and Aster Bay at $45,000 each and Second Street North East from Third Avenue to Fifth Avenue for $110,000.

Water main renewal projects took place on Macleod Avenue from Hedderly Street to Vermillion Street at a cost of $130,000 and 10th Avenue South West from Main Street to First Avenue at a cost of $100,000.

Finally, sewer main lining projects were budgetted for Fifth Avenue North East from Main Street to first Avenue at a cost of $80,000 and from the 300 block to Mountain Road at a cost of $100,000.

Overall, VanAlstyne is pleased with the progress made on the capital plan to this point.

“We’ve gotten a lot done this summer, earlier than some years. We haven’t had as many maintenance issues show up,” he said. “There’s been very few delays with anything so there’s enough time as long as rain stays away.”

Budget wise, VanAlstyne said things seem to be on track. In the past money left in the capital budget has been used to expand the scope of work. VanAlstyne does not know if that will be the case this year.

“So far we’re on schedule, I would say. We’re looking at stuff closer right now and maybe bouncing some ideas around, but nothing is set,” he said. “But there’s no big significant chunk of money left over on the capital that I can see.”

With the capital program handed off to Sterling Enterprises, Public Works staff will be shifting their focus.

“Public Works staff will be moving to our maintenance projects. So sidewalk maintenance throughout the community, some patching in areas where when Sterling is in town they pave over them,” he said. “I believe there will be two new catch basin renewals, as well, and they’ll start preparing the storm drains cleaning and clearing them to be ready for the winter months.”