By Cole Parkinson
As several sidewalks across Vauxhall have been identified as needing repairs in short order, town administration requested for town council to provide some funding towards this before the end of the outdoor season.
“I’ve been talking with Wendy (Bergen, CFO) trying to figure out how much we have to get them done in bulk,” stated CAO Cris Burns at town council’s July 19 meeting. “We have $100,000 leftover from the last sidewalk project that we didn’t complete. That project has now started and the guys have about two blocks ripped up for the sidewalk project over by the high school and that’s on the go.”
Burns also highlighted how much, and where, the money would come from.
“I was requesting another $100,000 of the MSI because we can’t use the gas tax, it has to be MSI for sidewalks,” he said. “The whole project a couple of years back was $600,000 and then a year or two later, the cost was almost $1 million. We’ll still contact them for a price before we go ahead.”
With nearly $100,000 already allocated, administration explained another $100,000 top-up would eliminate the vast majority of the trouble sidewalks within the town.
“We currently have $100,000 allocated for what we are doing and then another $100,000 for the crumbling sidewalks,” added Burns.
“We also want to make sure the community is aesthetically pleasing,” stated Mayor Margaret Plumtree.
Burns explained what sidewalks were in the highest need of repairs.
“The current ones are 1st Avenue, that single path where it’s been bad for a while and I’ve actually gotten complaints on that. The west and east side of the park, they are single-sided areas, and then just across to the south. If we go south of 7th Street, between 2nd Ave and 1st Ave, there are both sides of the block there. I believe the recommendation is to just do half,” he said. “The other one is just across from the post office, on the west side and then just north of there, another block. One we measured up was by the medical centre, towards the corner of the Catholic church. It has a long crack going straight through it and it’s been like that for quite a while.”
A question was also posed around gauging community feedback on which sidewalks need repairs.
“To minimize some of the cost, if we wanted to move forward and have an official motion that we’ll have sidewalks north and west streets — would we have to open that up to the community to discuss? That wouldn’t be a bad thing for us because we’re a small community and sidewalks cost us a lot of money,” said Plumtree.
Administration also explained repairs to sidewalks are down by town staff.
A motion to provide $100,000 to sidewalk repairs from MSI was carried unanimously.