Construction ongoing as summer winds to a close

By Ken Kellar
Staff writer

Despite swiftly coming to the end of a wet and flooded summer, work on several capital and infrastructure projects in Fort Frances is continuing at a decent pace.

In a verbal update to council during Monday night’s committee of the whole meeting, Town of Fort Frances Operations and Facilities manager Travis Rob gave his verbal update on the capital projects currently underway in town.

Starting off with the ongoing construction work at the Memorial Sports Centre, Rob noted that among other projects being done at the arena, the roof work on the 52 Canadians Arena is approximately 90 percent complete.

“Work has started on the installation of the snow guard rails along the west side,” Rob continued.

“There is still some flashing work to be completed once the new membrane has been completed, and at this time all other roof work has been complete.”

In addition to the roof work, the 52 Canadians Arena has received a new sprinkler system, which Rob said has been mostly installed by this point.

“Focus to date has been on the ice surface so that work is complete and ready for ice in,” he explained.

“A good portion of the new piping has been hung, fittings and heads are being installed and header lines are being ran back to the new sprinkler room and some other hidden areas around the ice area. The town will be installing a new water service for the sprinkler system soon, possibly this week depending on some other things that are going on.”

The final item Rob touched on at the Memorial Sports Centre is the new flooring that will be going in to the weight and cardio rooms. Rob said the contractor hired to do the installation is also doing a similar job at the Emo arena, which means that job has to be finished up before work can start in town.

“The contractor is looking to mobilize next week, their plan is to start with the Emo arena and then move to Fort Frances after that’s been completed, or close to completion to make sure that Emo is ready for ice in,” Rob said.

“Once we have a more firm start date we will be able to advertise the shutdown for the weight room and the cardio room areas. Due to some material shortages, the ice areas of Memorial Sports Centre will be deferred to 2023.”

With all areas of the Memorial Sports Centre covered, Rob turned his update to the various road construction projects going on in town, namely the reconstruction of Mowat Avenue and Kings Highway.

Beginning with Mowat, Rob shared that some material delivery issues have slowed down the expected pace of work along the avenue, but crews are ready to go as soon as the necessary deliveries are made.

“The first thing that the contractor is planning on completing is the storm sewer,” he said.

“Material was supposed to be delivered [Monday]. As of late this afternoon, it still had not been delivered, so once the materials are on site, they’ll be able to dive right in and get work started as they are basically ready to go, just waiting for materials.”

Meanwhile work has progressed well on Kings Highway, Rob said.

“Over to Kings Highway, geotextile fabric, granular B type two, and geogrids been complete along the entire South lanes,” he explained.

“They’ve capped the granular B with a layer of granular A in preparation obviously for traffic, which was moved over there a number of weeks ago. Concrete curb and gutter will be completed once they have the granular A on both sides of the road. Roadway excavation is complete along about 40 percent of the North lanes. Geotextile fabric has also been installed. Granular B type two is being placed and shaped in preparation for the geogrid. They’ll continue to work on this initial portion of the road until they can re-establish the west entrance to Langtry’s lot before they will then flip over and move continually eastward.”