March 8, 2019 3:39 pm

Busy construction season ahead in Peterborough County

Keene Station Bridge on Base Line Road will be replaced this year.

Mark Giunta/Global Peterborough
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With spring just around the corner, construction crews are getting ready to start a busy season in Peterborough County.

A number of projects are on the books on county roads including 45 in Asphodel-Norwood, where a nearly one-kilometre stretch will be replaced, just north of the village of Hastings.

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“With respect to construction in Canada, we’re looking at two seasons — winter and construction,” said Peter Nielsen, manager of engineering and design for the county.  “We encourage the travelling public to be safe travelling through our construction zones.”

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Maintenance on roads and bridges is an issue in rural Ontario and Peterborough County isn’t immune to it. The costs keep going up.

“The capital projects approved by county council is valued at over $12 million,” Nielsen said. “Over the last seven years, that represents a doubling of capital investment towards infrastructure.”

Some of that infrastructure being replaced includes a few bridges, including the Keene Station Bridge in Otonabee-South Monaghan Township at a cost of $1.2 million and the Crowe River Bridge on County Road 504 near Apsley at a cost of $2 million.

“We operate 154 bridges both on county roads and township roads. More than 50 per cent of those bridges are more than 50 years old. It’s just a progressive age and deterioration of those structures over time,” Nielsen said. “There was an investment in the ’50s and ’60s for bridges and they’re all coming due.”

READ MORE: James A. Gifford Causeway widening project delayed

One major project that is on the books this year is the widening of the James A. Gifford Causeway between Bridgenorth and Ennismore.

“County council is committed with moving ahead with that project,” Nielsen said. “We’re working with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans to achieve their authorizations for the project.”

If those authorizations come in soon, major construction is expected to start by the fall.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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