The County of Haliburton will proceed with the replacement of the bridge along Little Hawk Lake Road (County Road 13) with both federal and provincial funding in place to help with the cost of the project.
The county was successful in obtaining funding through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program with the federal government covering 50 per cent of the cost the provincial government 33 per cent and the county the remainder. The budget for the project is $1.25 million meaning the feds will contribute $625000 the province $412500 and the county $212500. The county’s portion will come from reserves that money initially allotted for the Hawk Lake bridge in the 2019 budget.
Constructed in 1925 the bridge is approaching a century in age and has a number of issues including that it is currently weight-restricted needs its barriers replaced and that its deck is quite low and at certain times of year close to the surface of the Kennisis River which it spans. The river which connects the Hawk Lakes to Halls Lake is part of the feeder system for the Trent Severn Waterway.
“Water levels are dangerously close” Haliburton County public works director Craig Douglas said during an Oct. 9 county roads advisory committee meeting adding he wasn’t sure what would happen if a loose dock floated down the river during a time of high water.
“We tendered this out and got fairly competitive pricing” Douglas said. The county received bids ranging from $922000 to $1.3 million for the project and it was the committee’s recommendation the contract be awarded to McPherson-Andrews Contracting Ltd. which had the lowest bid at just more than $922000 plus taxes.
“It needs to be a light-weight deck because we’re not replacing the footings” Douglas explained.
“Most importantly this is a 2020 budget item so pre-approval is recommended” Douglas said and the committee recommended that budget pre-approval be granted. Construction is slated to commence mid-May and be completed by the end of June.
County Warden and Algonquin Highlands Deputy Mayor Liz Danielsen said she’d prefer not to have construction vehicles using Braeloch Road to access the site.
“It’s always a challenge that road without adding a lot of construction traffic to it” Danielsen said.