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Orangeville ‘perfect for cycling and trails,’ consultant advises.

Orangeville has a blueprint toward effectively promoting cycling as an option for travel in the municipality.

Town council recently got a look at the Cycling and Trails Master Plan compiled by Dillon Consulting. That's a long-range transportation plan to support the design and implementation of cycling and trail facilities in Orangeville.

The Cycling and Trails Master Plan project cost $70,771. That's split by $30,000 from the 2018 Parks and Recreation Capital budget and $40,771 is being funded under the Ontario Municipal Commuter Cycling Program.

The plan was developed with stakeholder input compiled through public and group meetings in the community. 

“The development of cycling and trails infrastructure is recognised as an increasingly relevant issue in municipalities across Canada,” the master plan advises.

Orangeville's growing population puts increased pressure on its infrastructure. An extensive cycling and trail system will enable the town to better meet the mobility needs associated with its population growth.

“Orangeville is relatively small and dense, which makes it perfect for cycling and trails,” said Jeff Axisa, a transportation planner with Toronto-based Dillon Consulting. 

“Cycling and walking trips can be made over most of Orangeville relatively easy.”

The plan includes a ranked inventory of existing trails, paved bicycle routes, and portions of the railway corridor in Orangeville.

Mr. Axisa said the plan is flexible and meant to guide decision-making regarding the town's trail infrastructure and cycling needs.

“The infrastructure and initiatives outlined in this plan build on past successes and identify a new and improved vision for growth to make the Town of Orangeville a more walkable and bikeable town for people of all ages and abilities,” he said.

A walkable and bikeable town is one where people walk and cycle because it is a convenient, fun, safe, and healthy choice. It is a town in which people of all ages and abilities are able to walk and cycle for any trip purpose. 

“This is really a culture shift,” said Councillor Joe Andrews. “This is a mindset-shift for a lot of the people in this community.”

Coun. Grant Peters suggested the Cycling and Trails Master Plan could be used to assist in making future decisions regarding roads redevelopment.

Mayor Sandy Brown said adopting a focus on cycling access to the town could prove to be a boon to tourism in Orangeville.

“A lot of communities that have embraced biking have really benefitted from it,” the mayor said.

staff asked that $900,000 from the wastewater Reserve Fund be used to get the refurbishment work done.

“Where does this get us?” said Coun. Grant Peters. “Are we anticipating any other large tender projects coming down the line that we need to be aware of?”

Heather McGinnity, the town's Public Works manager of environmental services, said major rehabilitation work on the second of the plant's two digesters is also being considered.

“We don't know yet what the scope of that project will be,” Ms. McGinnity said. “We have had some issues with the floating roof this year. Once we get in there and clean it out, that could be another major expenditure that we are going to have to deal with in the short term.”

She said she doesn't know at this point how much any work on Digester No. 2 will cost.

“We did just complete the major expansion and upgrades at the plant,” Ms. McGinnity said. “A lot of the work that we expected to do has been completed already and it will be just be ongoing maintenance and repairs at the plant going forward.”

The Digester No. 1 project has a price tag of $2,662,500 but the lowest tender is for $2,379,603. Coun. Debbie Sherwood wondered about the discrepancy in figures.

“The difference is in the design costs by the consultant,” said Doug Jones, general manager of infrastructure services at Public Works. “We hired a consultant to do the design work so the overall project costs include both design and construction.”

Money from property owners that pays for water and wastewater service flows into the municipal Wastewater Reserve Fund, which was at $4.2 million before council permitted the additional $900,000 infusion.

“The amount of money we collect far exceeds our operating costs every year,” said Mr. Jones. “The difference is what is transferred into reserves. With every water bill that is paid, there is a continuous transfer of funds into reserves.” 

Post date: 2019-06-06 14:21:40
Post date GMT: 2019-06-06 18:21:40
Post modified date: 2019-06-21 09:39:12
Post modified date GMT: 2019-06-21 13:39:12
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