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Four months left until Guelph is "Remastered"

Friday, November 19, 2010

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  • Guelph's 71.5 million dollar infrastructure upgrade has to be finished by 2011.

    Guelph's 71.5 million dollar infrastructure upgrade has to be finished by 2011.

  • Guelph's 71.5 million dollar infrastructure upgrade has to be finished by 2011.

    Guelph's 71.5 million dollar infrastructure upgrade has to be finished by 2011.

  • Changes in bus service has frustrated students this semester.

    Changes in bus service has frustrated students this semester.

  • Traffic backs up on Stone Road during rush hour.

    Traffic backs up on Stone Road during rush hour.

  • Adding bike lanes to Stone Road is costing $2,250,000.

    Adding bike lanes to Stone Road is costing $2,250,000.

  • Will Guelph be "remastered" by March 2011?

    Will Guelph be "remastered" by March 2011?

Written by Oriana Tahireh Marsh

There are two things I've learned this semester.  One, three thirty to six o'clock seems to be rush hour in Guelph.   And two, Stone Road is under construction.  I keep forgetting this however, as I leave class at 3:50 and hop on the 52 to go home.  The minute the bus gets west of the lights at Gordon, I remember and wish I'd walked: it'd be quicker.

Stone Road is one of 25 road and facility projects that have been going on since spring of this year.

It's all part of “Guelph Remastered”, an infrastructure upgrade project worth 71.5 million dollars.  Of this, 44.4 million is federal and provincial infrastructure stimulus funds and comes with the condition that projects be completed by March 2011.

The City of Guelph says this is the equivalent of doing 5 years worth of work in 1 year.

“Not only will these upgrades create over 800 jobs locally, they will also enrich our quality of life and prepare us for the demands of our growing population” reads a statement from the city.

The Stone Road project is costing $2,250,000 to put in bike lanes from Scottsdale Dr. to Victoria Rd. and Stone Rd. to Harts Lane.

The Halon Expressway is getting an intersection upgrade valued at $11,043,174 by the Ministry of Transportation.

Edinburgh Road from Speedvale Ave. to London Rd. is getting the complete makeover: road resurfacing, sewer repairs, replacement of watermains, storm sewers, curbs, gutters, sidewalks, traffic signals and it is getting bike lanes. All for only $2,500,000.

The main fire station is getting a roof replacement, energy system and accessibility upgrade worth $1,193,500.

The city is also committing $3,000,000 to replacing 20,000 square metres of sidewalk in various locations.

Detours, lane closures, traffic jams, and limited access to bus stops and businesses is causing plenty of frustration for Guelph residents and visitors.  The city reminds us that “unlike a diamond, which is forever, these inconveniences are only temporary.”

Temporary or not, people are frustrated with delays and not knowing what is going on.  Whether or not communication to public has been effective is up for debate.

Less than half of one percent, or $324,000 of the funds have been spent on communication efforts.  These include signs on site, print, radio, and online advertising designed by DDB Canada communications agency.   DDB has worked on many well known projects, including ads for the Canadian Cancer Society, Knorr Sidekicks (the sad salt shaker add) and Subaru car company.  The firm stirred up some controversy in June when they refused to disclose full details of their contract with the city to the Guelph Mercury.

The twitter feed for the project (guelphtraffic) currently has only 195 followers, but you may want to follow it if you are looking for information on road closures. You can also view updates on projects and transit service advisories on the Guelph Remastered website.

 

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