Report backs future upgrades

Armstrong councillors have some reading to do on the city’s capital infrastructure upgrading plan.

Armstrong councillors have some reading to do on the city’s capital infrastructure upgrading plan.

The thorough report, prepared by Gentech Engineering, is more than 300 pages long.

“This report is extremely valuable to the city as it will assist us in setting a course for the future with respect to planning for maintenance and replacement for the core services we provide to residents,” said Armstrong administrator Patti Ferguson.

“It will provide proof positive of why things are prioritized the way they are in future years’ budgets, what funds are required to meet the priorities and why.”

The comprehensive report looks at the city’s roads, water, lands and sewer lines, and the challenges faced in maintaining the services.

Coun. Ryan Nitchie felt that once councillors have had a chance to read the report, it would give them some leverage in discussions with the government for provincial funding.

“We haven’t asked for a lot of infrastructure dollars for in-ground work,” said Nitchie. “We did ask for some for the arena and pool projects. This report gives us a little more credence to go to the ministers.”

Council passed a motion to refer the Gentech report to a workshop setting where a thorough discussion can be had ahead of the upcoming budget deliberations.

Staff also reminded council that it has confirmed going ahead with the top-two items for 2012 on its current five-year plan.

Smith Drive will get a street lighting upgrade at a cost of $150,000 of which $60,000 has already been saved, and safety improvements to the road will also be done.

That will include closing an alley behind the liquor store and Village Cheese Company, closing one of the four entrances to 7-Eleven and installing a crosswalk on Smith Road to a bus stop between McDonald’s and Petro-Canada.

Staff will prepare tender documents for the two items.