New Burgoyne Bridge in need of repairs
The Burgoyne Bridge could be reduced to a single lane this week as work crews scrambles to beat the weather to repair and repave its road surface.
Jason Marr, Niagara Region’s manager of engineering and structures, said crews have been waiting for the right weather conditions to replace weatherproofing and asphalt on the span.
He said when asphalt was originally laid down last November it was done during poor weather. At the time, the work had to be done to complete the bridge’s superstructure, but the inclement weather caused problems with the asphalt later.
The asphalt has been removed, but the road cannot be repaved until new weatherproofing materials are laid down. Marr said the weatherproofing needs certain weather conditions for it to be installed.
“We were hoping to see it done this weekend, but it was too humid,” he said, adding work crews are aiming to have it done this week. “That’s the trick now; to get everything done while the weather is good. Otherwise, we would end up back in the same position.”
The repaving is one item of a list of “deficiencies” that must be fixed before the Region will certify the $95-million bridge is officially completed.
Marr said most of the work is cosmetic in nature and there are no safety or structural problems with the bridge.
Moreover, he said the Region is not footing the bill for any of these touch-ups.
“These are deficiencies that are workmanship issues, so those are things the contractor has to do,” he said.
One of the more noticeable cosmetic issues with the bridge is not scheduled for repair — cracks have appeared in the bridge’s sidewalks.
Marr said the cracks were expected and are the result of the concrete expanding and contracting with changes in temperature.
He said the cracks will be monitored and if they worsen repairs may be ordered.
There will be some upcoming work on the sidewalks, however. Marr said marbling in the concrete and other cosmetic irregularities will be touched up.
Marr said he doesn’t have a timeline for the official completion of the bridge to be certified, but said the deficiencies will have to be repaired before that happens.
Meanwhile, Ontario Provincial Police say they are still investigating the audit report on the bridge’s construction.
In the spring, a $500,000 forensic audit conducted by Deloitte Canada found a host of systematic problems with the regional process that led to the bridge construction. The report did not make any claims of criminal wrongdoing.
However, the report said the investigation into three issues — how contracts were awarded to Parsons, the company that designed the bridge, as well as regional contracts unrelated to the bridge issued to Circle P. Paving and Regional Trenching — could not proceed further without the assistance of law enforcement.
The report also says the Region needs to review its procurement, conflict of interest and hiring policies.
In May, the Niagara Regional Police servicesboardpassedthereporttothe OPP, requesting an investigation.
On Tuesday, an OPP spokesman said the report is in the hands of the OPP criminal investigations branch, but said she could not further comment on an ongoing investigation.