City shelves plans for CN Rail pedestrian underpass

The pedestrian underpass connecting the Stampede Grounds to the River Valley Trail will not go ahead for the time being.

The CN Rail pedestrian underpass planned for Williams Lake to connect the Stampede Grounds to the River Valley Trail will not go ahead for the time being because it is too expensive.

Originally the city had developed a $688,345 budget for the underpass.

Eighty per cent was going to be covered by a $550,640 provincial community recreation program grant.

But last month, of the four tenders that came in, the lowest bid was for $1,087,939, which with added costs would result in total project cost of more than $1,300,000.

The deadline for using the grant is March 31, 2015, so council has directed staff to request that the grant amount be diverted to another project within the city.

For example, the city will be responsible for the pedestrian underpass slated for the Highway 97, Toop and Carson intersection upgrade.

“It would fit the exact same project guidelines, just in a different location,” acting CEO Geoff Goodall said.

If another project is not accepted the grant will have to be returned.

To date $8,000 was spent on the pre-construction phase of the project and the city is moving forward with the land purchase worth $16,000, Goodall confirmed.

“The project is still important to the city, to have that loop, but we just don’t have the funds at this time,” Cook said.

Bonnell said the costs incurred so far should be still eligible under the grant, which Goodall agreed, adding this type of project does meet a number of grant opportunities that might become avialable.

 

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