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Costs soar for new bridge over Groat Road

The price tag for a new bridge over Groat Road at 102nd Avenue needs to jump by $11.5-million, according to a city report that pegs the new project budget at over $32-million.
The price tag for a new bridge over Groat Road at 102nd Avenue needs to jump by $11.5-million, according to a city report that pegs the new project budget at over $32-million. John Lucas, Edmonton Journal

EDMONTON – The price tag for a new bridge over Groat Road at 102nd Avenue needs to jump by $11.5-million, according to a city report that pegs the new project budget at over $32-million.

More money is needed to deal with design issues, provide additional transit service during construction, and make up for inflationary costs since construction was initially slated to begin in 2011, according to a report scheduled to be discussed at the city’s transportation committee on Wednesday.

The bridge was built in 1910 and links the High Street area with Glenora. Major work on the bridge was last done in 2002, but bridge replacement was deferred for 10 years.

“The bridge has now reached the end of its service life,” the report states.

Most of the $11.5-million is needed to tackle design issues, including $4-million to cover “slope stabilization measures” on the east and west slopes that flank the bridge, according to the report.

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Another $3.5-million is needed to update drainage infrastructure around the bridge. The current bridge has a steel grate deck, which allows water to pass through. The new deck will be concrete and engineers believe the drainage system can’t handle storm flows from the new bridge deck and the existing roadways.

Construction is expected to start in summer 2014 and run for 15 months. The report calls for $2-million to cover the cost of additional transit service and a pedestrian shuttle during the construction period. Another $2-million is being asked to cover inflationary costs. The original budget for the project was $20,650,000.