Canada and Ontario invest in roads and bridges in rural communities in Western Ontario

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Ontario Construction News staff writer

The governments of Canada and Ontario announced funding last week for the improvement of road and bridge infrastructure in Western Ontario.

Several communities will benefit from 11 projects designed to increase road safety and reliability, improve the flow of traffic, and help prevent future flooding in rural communities. Investing in these projects will not only increase safety for drivers, but also for cyclists and pedestrians.

In Wilmot, a one-lane bridge will be replaced with a two-lane concrete bridge that will remove height and weight restrictions, reduce risk of flooding, and increase traffic circulation. The project will include building a new foundation, abutments, and superstructure with a reinforced concrete deck and barrier walls; reconstructing roadway approaches; and applying erosion and sediment control measures.

Of the 11 projects, one project in Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation, will replace several culverts, preventing road washouts and increasing the service life of the connected roadway. This project will include cleaning and regrading ditches, relocating utilities, and applying measures to prevent erosion.

The federal government is investing more than $13.2 million through the Rural and Northern Communities Infrastructure Stream (RNIS) of the Investing in Canada plan. The Government of Ontario is contributing over $7.5 million; while municipalities and a First Nation community are contributing over $4.3 million.

Ontario is contributing $10.2 billion under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to improve public transit; community, culture and recreation; green, and rural and northern community infrastructure.

The Rural Economic Development Strategy leverages ongoing federal investments and provides a vision for the future, identifying practical steps to take in the short term, and serving as a foundation to guide further work.

“Investments in roads and bridges not only improve safety and reliability for residents but also increase the lifespan of roadways and transportation corridors which are essential for rural and northern Ontario communities to maintain continued access to necessary resources and economic opportunities,” said Tim Louis, Member of Parliament for Kitchener–Conestoga.

These shovel ready projects are expected to drive local economic development.

“Bridge 13 plays an important role in accessing the villages of Chepstow and Cargill, the subdivisions and buildings within each community, as well as the Fritzall Construction Services expansion. In addition, Concession 8 in Greenock has higher traffic volumes as a route to Bruce Power. Replacing the bridge will address health and safety and drainage concerns and allow for the construction of a sidewalk to assist with resident safety. This is an exciting project for the village of Chepstow and community of Brockton,” said Chris Peabody, Mayor of Brockton.

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