Roads are always a major concern for residents and their local councils.
Last night, at the Gerry Masterson Community Centre in Thurlow ward, councillors Paul Carr
and Jackie Denyes told a small group of residents that a lot of roadwork had been accomplished so far this year.
The Thurlow ward councillors said they were glad they were able to get a new one million dollars for rural road maintenance in this year’s budget, and they will push to keep that amount in the city budget for years to come.
Ongoing road work includes shave and pave, crack sealing and resurfacing.
Meanwhile, a lot got done in the rural part of Belleville this year, besides over one million dollars in road maintenance.
Among the projects were a recycle centre at the Thurlow landfill, new playground equipment at various locations, a new fire hall in the far east of Thurlow on Old Highway 2 and another fire hall in Plainfield.
Some of the projects proposed for Thurlow Ward next year are a $1.8 million reconstruction of Mudcat Road, from Phillipston Road to Sanctuary Lane.
Also proposed is a $520,000 resurfacing for Casey Road, from Highway 37 to Forsythe Road.
City staff is suggesting $240,000 be spent on the rehabilitation of Bell Creek Bridge along with $150,000 for design work for the
rehabilitation of Latta Bridge and $30,000 for design work for Putnam Road reconstruction.
Belleville council will discuss next year’s capital spending budget during three days of meetings next week.
Councillor Carr was careful to point out that Thurlow Ward residents had either a very small increase in their tax rate this year, or a very small
decrease in their tax rate.
On another topic, big changes and major improvements are coming to traffic and people movement north of the 401 in Belleville.
Mayor Taso Christopher, along with councillors Paul Carr and Jackie Denyes, told a small group of residents in Thurlow Ward last night that the Ministry of Transportation continues to work on new exits and entrances to the 401 from highways 37 and 62.
The city is also awaiting approval from the provincial government for major work on Mineral and Maitland Roads.
Mayor Christopher says road extensions and route changes coming in the 401 area in the north of the city will take a few years and make the area more liveable for decades to come.
Not for the first time, the Mayor also noted that environmental assessments by the provincial government were taking much longer than they used to and holding important projects up.
A couple of Thurlow businessmen commented on how making Casey Road off limits to heavy trucks had been bad for business.
One man said the trucks had been on the road for 50 years, while the complaining residents had only been around for a few years.
Councillor Denyes said she understood their concerns but the condition of the road was causing serious safety concerns and banning heavy truck
traffic for a temporary period was council’s only option.