Mill Creek Bridge on Bruce Road 17 in Port Elgin will be rehabilitated this winter. (Photo by Jordan Mackinnon)

Mill Creek Bridge Project Gets The Go Ahead From Bruce Council

A major infrastructure project in Saugeen Shores will be moving ahead this winter.

Bruce County council has approved the rehabilitation of the Mill Creek Bridge on Bruce Rd. 17 at the eastern edge of Port Elgin, with work set to get underway in February.

Highways engineer Brian Knox says they were able to move ahead with the project in the winter because only the deck of the bridge requires work, so there’s no need to have workers enter the now-frigid waters below the bridge.

“Mill Creek Bridge requires the replacement of the superstructure, meaning that there’s no in-water work,” says Knox. “That offers the [Bruce County Highways] department, in conjunction in working with Saugeen Shores and an adjacent developer, the chance to undertake the rehabilitation starting in the winter and completing it by early summer.”

With work expected to be completed by early June, Saugeen Shores Mayor Mike Smith says it’s perfect timing for local businesses as the work will be finishing just as they get set for the busy tourism season.

He says it could be the way of the future to tackle big projects during the winter months when it’s possible, rather than having detours all summer.

“We’ve run into this issue with other roads where we’ve had to close them and affect the businesses and more and more, we’ve done things to try and accommodate [business owners],” says Smith. “So this is, I think, the future when you affect businesses with big construction projects, you’ve got to try and accommodate them in some way.”

The total cost of the project is $2.2-million, with Bruce County paying $1.7-million and the remaining $500,000 covered by Redhawk Construction, who is planning a 111-home development around the Westlinks golf course immediately southeast of the bridge.