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Special Council Meeting Highlights - Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Central Bridge Replacement – Utility Relocations - Currently, Enbridge, Bell and Rogers have significant infrastructure placed within the Central Bridge structure that will need to be abandoned and/or relocated in advance of the bridge replacement in 2022. Staff, the Town’s consultant, and representatives of the utility companies have been working on strategies for some time now on how to address the needs of the utilities without impacting the Town’s plans for the replacement of the bridge.

Enbridge has determined that they can provide service to the community without this connection for the duration of the project but will need to have the river crossing reinitiated after the bridge is reconstructed. Their plans for installation of a new gas main on the bridge have been considered as part of the design process.

Bell and Rogers have critical telecommunication infrastructure within the current structure that will need to be temporarily relocated to ensure continuity of service for the duration of the project. This temporary relocation plan will need to be implemented prior to the Town commencing work on the bridge. Bell is taking the lead role with developing relocation plans on behalf of all telecommunication parties and will install the necessary temporary infrastructure to relocate services off of the bridge during construction which will provide ongoing service during the project. During the bridge reconstruction, new cables will be installed on the bridge structure and once integrated into the system, the temporary infrastructure will be taken out of service.

Financial Implications- Due to the approach that Enbridge is able to take on this project (no temporary relocation required), there will be no costs allocated to the Town from Enbridge. There will be considerable costs incurred relating to the telecommunications infrastructure, primarily since a temporary relocation is required.

This evening, Council passed By-law No. 27-2021 which will see the Town and Bell enter into a Municipal Access Agreement (MAA). This agreement would be in place for a 10-year term and will not just govern the approach to the Central Bridge project but would provide the framework for all interactions between the Town and Bell over the 10-year term. The total cost to the Town for the Central Bridge Project as a result of implementing the MAA would be approximately $220,000. The 2021 budget includes a budget of $300,000 relating to the costs of this work.

Tender PW5-2020 – Central Bridge Replacement and Bridge Street Reconstruction and Various Projects - Tenders were received in response to Tender PW5-202 encompassing the Central Bridge replacement, Bridge Street reconstruction, Bell Street reconstruction, Gillies Bridge rehabilitation, McArthur Island Watermain Crossing, and Mill Street Pedestrian Upgrades until Thursday, January 14th, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. This tender process is the culmination of 18 months of detailed design development through the work of designers, with inputs from Council, staff, various stakeholders, residents, regulatory agencies, and utility companies. The tender construction period will extend over two (2) years commencing in 2021.

All bids received were complete and accurate, and the low bidder, Louis Bray Construction has demonstrated through examples of prior projects and industry references that were included in their bid submission that they are well qualified to undertake this major project.

The Town had an estimated budget of $11,769,240 for the various aspects of the tendered works.  The lowest price per the tender plus contingency and provisional items totals $15,382,046, leaving a shortfall of $3,612,806. 

Staff has been reviewing the tender results with both our consultant, R.V. Anderson and Louis Bray Construction to determine areas where cost savings can be realized through alternatives or elimination of items. It has been determined that there is little opportunity in the Year 1 works (Gillies Bridge, McArthur Island Watermain, Bell St., Mill St.) for cost savings as the design elements are necessary and cannot be substituted or eliminated. The total construction costs of the Year 1 works are $4,131,733 (net HST including no contingency or provisional items).

Staff are exploring several opportunities within the Year 2 works (Central Bridge replacement and Bridge Street reconstruction) to reduce costs. Council directed staff to work with Louis Bray Construction and R.V. Anderson on a value engineering exercise regarding the Year 2 works in an effort to find savings and report back to Council at the completion of this exercise.