Ottawa bridges not meeting taxpayer test

Ottawa bridges not meeting taxpayer test
Posted on October 5, 2013 | Bruce Webster | Written on October 5, 2013
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Letter type:
Open

Publisher

Publisher:
Ottawa Sun

Ottawa city engineers and those who sign contracts on behalf of taxpayers have once again demonstrated a lack of skill and understanding. The pedestrian bridge on the Airport Parkway is two years late, most likely many dollars over budget AND in potential failure mode is one of at least three engineering failures.

The Hazeldean bridge is a monument to stupidity which “sank more than expected” (perhaps due to soil conditions), Strandherd is way behind completion and now we have the Airport Parkway example which may have to be torn down. How much of the money designated for this project has been spent? Will the finished project come in at $13 million?… FOR A FOOT BRIDGE!

Hope the city NEVER goes ahead with a new Ottawa River crossing under its control.

Will heads roll from these continued fiascos? Nancy can you hear footsteps?

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My question about this fiasco is really simple. Why is it that weather-protected pedestrian bridges have been built over the Queensway without any of this muss and fuss but Ottawa can't get it right over the Airport Parkway? Why not use a slightly larger version of the tried and true technology used in those bridges (expanded to add the cycling lanes)? I suspect the answer, not yet mentioned in the media reports, is that a key part of the mandate was to make it a "work of art", and not just a functional bridge. When functionality takes a back seat to artistry in construction projects, debacles like this can only be expected.