Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker announces infrastructure funding for a roundabout west of Allan Park, plus culvert and bridge funding Friday at the Grey County administration building in Owen Sound. (Scott Dunn/The Sun Times)
A roundabout will be built to make Grey County’s most accident-prone intersection safer with some provincial funding announced Friday, the second of several steps which should see the project completed by summer 2022.The Ontario government confirmed it would cover a $606,606 share of the $1.94-million project to replace the intersection of Grey Road 3 and Grey Road 4 with a traffic circle, west of Allan Park, in West Grey.This intersection has “the highest accident history in the county.” There have been 31 accidents within 500 metres of the intersection since 2015, an April 25 Grey County report said.There are stop signs with flashing lights at the intersection for Grey road 3, which runs north and south, but no stop signs on Grey Road 4, transportation director Pat Hoy told county council on April 25.“The intersection is large and there are vehicles approaching at high speed,” the report says.Vehicle counts in 2013 found almost 1,600 entered the intersection from the north or south and 4,700 entered from east or west between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m.County staff believe creating a one-lane roundabout will reduce collisions at that location, Hoy said.Receipt of funding would move up the construction schedule for this road project by one year, he told council.Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound MPP Bill Walker, who is also the Associate Minister of Energy, made the funding announcement from a federal-provincial infrastructure program at the county building in Owen Sound.He also said there’s $768,320 for the Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation for culvert flood-damage repairs, $267,639 for replacement of Soper’s Bridge on Sideroad 20 in Arran-Elderslie, and $465,620 to replace Lantz Bridge northwest of Durham in West Grey.Walker, who stood behind a podium with a blue and white sign which said “Infrastructure for the People,” told reporters in answer to a question about his role in these many announcements that “I don’t pick and choose which municipality gets (what). I leave that to the people in the infrastructure office.”“We don’t really get involved in that. I just want to make sure, from my perspective, I get my fair share for Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound.”Walker said he did get involved in advocating for funding to reconstruct Inglis Falls Road, funding for which he announced in May. That was because, he said, there is a potential safety issue.Provincial funding for all of the projects announced Friday comes from the Canada Infrastructure Program: Rural and Northern Communities Funding Stream. That program includes funding for Indigenous communities and other communities with populations between 5,000 and 100,000.The county report says the roundabout will cost $1.94 million, with half of eligible costs ($910,000) paid by the federal government, 33.3 per cent of eligible costs paid by the province ($606,606) and 16.67 per cent ($423.4 million) paid by Grey.The remaining steps to complete the project include confirmation of federal funding expected by fall, a request for design services, environmental assessment, land acquisition, final design and utilities relocation, then construction in summer of 2022.