Here are my remarks:
Thank you Liz. We’re very pleased to be hosting you today at City Hall – especially since you’ve brought such good news!
It has been a very good week for Guelph.
On Tuesday I joined you and Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca for the announcement about the Morriston Bypass.
That project isn’t located in Guelph – but it will have a huge positive impact on people and businesses here.
It will remove the bottleneck that always happens on Highway 6 when it goes through Morriston. We’ve all experienced it at one time or another. The Bypass is going to make the trip much safer and easier for the travellers that use the Highway every day.
But of course that’s not why we’re here today. We’re here to talk about even MORE good news for Guelph.
Back in November, I joined Liz and Transportation Minister Del Duca in this very spot when you announced that applications for the Connecting Links program were open.
I remember talking to City Engineer Kealy Dedman right after the announcement, and she said “Don’t worry, I’m already writing the application in my head!”
Well, you did a good job writing it – because today here we are again, with the good news that that application was successful.
I want to thank Liz and the Province of Ontario for this funding for the reconstruction of York Road, from Wyndham to Ontario Streets.
We’re grateful that the Province is investing in infrastructure. It’s well-known that, like many cities, Guelph has a gap between the infrastructure we need, and what local property taxpayers can afford. I want to thank the Province for helping us bridge that gap with this very important project.
The York Road project will involve the total reconstruction of the road, and the replacement of all the underground infrastructure – storm sewers, santitary sewers, and watermains.
This is the kind of infrastructure that you almost forget is there – but you really need it! If you’ve ever had a sewer backup in your basement; if you’ve ever had a problem with your water or wastewater pipes – you know how absolutely vital this infrastructure is.
The project will also involve repaving the road, reconstructing the sidewalks and putting in bike lanes. These are the kind of improvements people do notice – and they are much-needed on this stretch of York Road.
York Road is important to the City for many reasons:
• It’s a major arterial road;
• It’s a truck route and a transit route;
• It’s one of the key gateways to our city;
• It’s a prime commercial corridor – and one that’s poised to grow;
• And it’s the site of the Guelph Innovation District, further down York Road, which will be the site of major development in the years to come.
As with the Morriston Bypass announcement – this announcement isn’t just about roads and pipes – It’s about jobs, investment, growth, and quality of life.
On behalf of the City of Guelph, I want to thank Liz and the Province of Ontario for investing in all of those things.
This is indeed a good day for Guelph. Thank you!