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Marion Underpass is too big, too expensive: Councillor

Marion Underpass
Designs of the proposed Marion Underpass.

WINNIPEG — A massive underpass project at Marion St. and Archibald St. is getting the cold shoulder from residents, businesses and even the area’s councillor.

READ MORE: Winnipeg city councillors battle over underpass projects

St. Boniface Councillor Matt Allard says the $250 million plans for that intersection are just too big and could cost up to $500 million.

“This project isn’t viable,” said Allard, “It’s too big, the city can’t afford a half a billion dollar project to settle this traffic intersection.”

Earlier this year, Allard pushed council to get moving on building an underpass for the CP rail line which causes traffic congestion and delays daily.

This design was proposed to residents and businesses at an open house in April. But the design didn’t sit well with most residents and businesses in the area. 140 properties will be bulldozed including the Tim Horton’s and Co-op gas station.

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So the consultant was going to make changes to the design, but Thursday Allard said he’s seen the revised design and there wasn’t much changed.

David McLeese has run Living Made Easy at that corner for nine years.

“I wasn’t happy when I first heard about it,” said McLeese, “I’d have to start all over again and it’s been almost 10 years of letting people know that I’m here.”

Allard says while there is a need for the underpass he says opposition from the neighbourhood has swayed him to ask city council to consider coming up with a new design.

That will go to Public Works Committee in January.

Marion and Archibald Street underpass design