The Municipality of Grey Highlands is planning an update to its road-needs study.
At its committee of the whole meeting on July 27, council voted in favour of proceeding with an update to the 2018 Road Management Plan. Municipal staff will work with consultants RJ Burnside and Associates Ltd. to develop a costing and scope of the plan.
Burnside’s representative Henry Centen presented the 2018 report to council at the meeting. The work on the report was initiated in 2018 and completed in 2020, unfortunately due to delays and staff turnover it was never presented to council. Typically such a report would be updated and refreshed after a few years.
The study looked at a number of aspects of the Grey Highlands road network including road conditions, sidewalks and culverts. The report indicated that, at the time, non-gravel roads in Grey Highlands required $60.42 million in maintenance and upgrades. Close to 50 per cent of the Grey Highlands roads were considered structurally deficient enough to warrant rehabilitation or reconstruction.
“It’s a fairly significant backlog,” said Centen.
Municipal staff brought the report to council seeking permission to develop a scope for the project update and an estimated cost.
“Since 2018, there has been significant growth in our municipality,” said Director of Transportation Chris Cornfield. “This is almost like a live document.”
Cornfield said over the period of time since the data has been gathered road projects have been completed and the municipality has made changes to how it maintains its roads. He said a refresh of the report would lead to up-to-date data that would be instrumental in the municipality’s asset management.
Members of council were supportive of the approach proposed by staff.
“It’s a very important report. Roads are a big part of our budget,” commented Mayor Paul McQueen.