A million dollar road and infrastructure upgrade is nearing completion in Fruitvale after years of planning and months of construction.
“There is some finishing work to complete but the multi-mode sidewalk is usable and is being well used,” says Fruitvale Mayor Steve Morissette. “The asphalt is also substantially complete with a nice smooth surface for residents to enjoy.”
With the final leg of work winding up, the village oversaw the installation of new utilities, both water and sewer, as well as service extensions to properties on Davis Avenue.
Housing development has led to increased use of the roadway over time, so the street was re-built and the 600-meter stretch re-paved.
Earlier this year the village was granted $190,000 by Bike BC. This funding covered 75 per cent of the cost for a three-metre wide multi-use pathway to run alongside the new road, which extends from the municipal boundary on Caughlin Road to Railway Park in the village centre.
“Davis/Caughlin has been in rough shape for some time with no safe space for walking/cycling/mobility scooters so it is a huge improvement in safety and mobility for multiple modes of transportation,” Morissette said. “It allows safe access to the downtown core for everyone from children to seniors.”
The Davis Avenue and Caughlin Road improvement project geared up in the fall of 2015 with a broad-scope report that zeroed in on problems with roadworks, drainage and utility services.
Six months later, council set a plan in motion by signing a loan authorization bylaw for up to $2.5-million.
Council held a special meeting this summer after a bid for the reconstruction project came in at $1.3 million. The village turned that tender down, became the general contractor, and then expanded the scope to include Caughlin Road resurfacing.
The cost for the entire project nears $800,000, not including the new water main.
Looking forward, council’s focus will shift toward demolition and remediation of the former middle school site as well as a few eco-friendly ideas that could also be cost-savers.
“We also must plan and continue the next phases of the wastewater treatment plant,” Morissette said. “I would like to see us look into the potential use of the wastewater lagoon as a heat source for the public works building, solar panels to help power our Memorial Hall, and explore any other green initiatives that could help us financially.”