Jeff Green | Sep 29, 2005
Feature Article - September 29, 2005
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Feature ArticleSeptember 29, 2005
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Highway 7 upgrade revisited
by Jeff Green
Engineers from the firm Morrison Hershfield made a presentation to Frontenac County Council last Wednesday (September 21) concerning proposed improvements to Highway 7 on the stretch between Wemyss in Tay Valley Township and Road 38 (Sharbot Lake) in Central Frontenac Township. This project may come to fruition at some undetermined time in the future. A public meeting on the plans will be scheduled in October.
After waiting patiently through a detailed 20 minute description of paving plans, plans for two eastbound and two westbound passing lanes along the stretch, improved exits at virtually all side roads, and putting the infrastructure in place for a traffic light at Roads 7 and 38, Central Frontenac County Warden Bill MacDonald piped in.
“I’m concerned that this project was promised for 2004. It was to be completed in 2004, in fact, and now there is no time frame at all. I’m also concerned that the construction is planned to end at Road 38, just about mile from Road 509, the main corridor to North Frontenac, where there is a very busy exit off of Highway 7 with no left turn exit lane coming from the west after a long curve.”
Ed Horba, a project manager from the Ministry of Transportation, said “we don’t make decisions about when projects are completed. What we’re doing now is dealing with all environmental concerns, looking at property that needs to be purchased to widen the road, and carrying on all the required engineering. Once we’ve completed our work, it’s up to the Ministry to deal with financing the project and deciding when to go ahead with it. We tell them how to do the project, they decide when.
“As far as Road 509 is concerned, the roads are split up by the Ministry into sections, and that section is dealt with by another office,” Horba concluded.
Bill MacDonald apologized for complaining to Horba, “I know it’s not your decision when these things get done, but the stretch of Highway 7 that runs through Frontenac County hasn’t been done in, what 35 years, while the other sections have all been upgraded.”
“It has been a while,” Ed Horba agreed.
A public session outlining all the proposed improvements to Highway 7, is scheduled for the Maberly Hall on October 13, in the late afternoon.
A similar presentation was made to Central Frontenac Council this Tuesday (September 27).
Ed Horba reported that one change has been made to the proposal in the intervening week. It is now calling for the actual establishment of a traffic light at the junction of Roads 38 and 7 when the project is completed.
He also reported that the stretch of Highway 7 from Sharbot Lake to Kaladar is at the early stages of an upgrading study, and said that “in the circumstances, rather than slowing down the process we are working on, it is best to leave the Road 509 concerns to that other process.”