Jane Mustac

Road projects coming to Amherstburg, one scheduled for early release

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The County of Essex has taken a look at its road projects scheduled for 2019 with some of the money needed being approved for early release.

Of the projects proposed for this year, four will impact county roadways either in or bordering on Amherstburg. One of those projects, pavement rehabilitation on County Road 20 between Howard Ave. (County Road 9) and County Road 50, was approved by county council for early release. The estimate on that project is $450,000.

Three other projects are on the schedule for 2019, though are not expected to be approved by county council until its budget deliberations. County council is scheduled to start discussing its 2019 budget later this month.

Essex County council has approved some of its 2019 road projects for early release. One of the projects approved prior to budget was pavement rehabilitation on County Road 20 between Howard Ave. (County Road 9) and County Road 50.

Other projects proposed for Amherstburg are repairing structural deterioration to the bridge at Big Creek on County Road 20 and a pair of culvert repairs – one on Malden Road (County Road 3) and another on Walker Road (County Road 11). The respective estimates for those projects are $60,000, $60,000 and $50,000.

There will likely be numerous repairs and upgrades to shoulders, existing paved roadways, culverts, guiderails, pedestrian crosswalks and signals at various locations around Essex County.

“The 2019 rehabilitation program has been developed with a level of expenditure of $11,770,250. The Annual Program, as well as the five-year rehabilitation program, supports the principles and objectives established in the Corporation’s Asset Management Plan,” stated Jane Mustac, the county’s manager of infrastructure services/engineer.

Mustac noted the total list of projects proposed for 2019 includes four preservation projects, two bridge rehabilitations, two bridge engineering assignments, two culvert rehabilitation/replacements, four culvert engineering assignments and 22 road rehabilitations.

The approved early release projects total an estimated $4.35 million.

 

CWATS Celebration held in Amherstburg

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Children and adults alike are being urged to limit their screen time and get some exercise and one of the ways to do that was celebrated recently.

The County-Wide Active Transportation System (CWATS) held its fifth annual celebration in Amherstburg with students from Amherstburg Public School joining town and county representatives in walking through Toddy Jones Park and Fort Malden National Historic Site.

Jane Mustac, manager of transportation planning and development with the County of Essex, noted one of the partners is the Healthy Kids Community Challenge and that the CWATS Celebration falls in line with the current goal to “power off and play.”

The aim is to have people “rediscover bikes and the outdoors and limit their screen time.”

Const. Steve Owen of the Amherstburg Police Service conducts a safety demonstration with Amherstburg Public School students during the recent CWATS celebration in Toddy Jones Park.

There has been a lot to celebrate over the past five years, she believed. Some of the recent initiatives that have been undertaken in Amherstburg have included trails and bike paths on Meloche Road and Texas Road and paved shoulders on County Road 18 from Meloche Road to Howard Ave.

The County Road 18 will eventually see paved shoulders all the way to Walker Road, said Mustac.

“This is stop six,” Mustac added, as CWATS presentations were also held in Tecumseh, Kingsville, Leamington, Essex, LaSalle and Lakeshore.

Other partners included ERCA, Bike Windsor-Essex, Tourism Windsor-Essex Pelee Island, the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit, all local municipalities, Amherstburg police, Ambassador Bicycles and Communities in Motion.

“Everyone is here for the same mandate,” said Mustac.

People in attendance in Amherstburg also learned how to maintain their bicycles and how to safely ride them with healthy snacks being served at the walk’s conclusion.

CWATS celebration tour comes to Amherstburg

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

An annual celebration of Essex County’s trail and paved shoulder network ended with a bang in Amherstburg.

Amherstburg was one of the stops on the County-Wide Active Transportation (CWATS) celebration tour with every municipality in Essex County participating. The celebration in Amherstburg occurred last Thursday afternoon in Toddy Jones Park with Mayor Aldo DiCarlo, members of both county and town administration and Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) officials helping to lead the walk. The walk left Toddy Jones Park, went through Fort Malden National Historic Site, proceeded south on Laird Ave. and returned to the park.

Const. Steve Owen instructs local students on bicycle safety as part of the County-Wide Active Transportation System (CWATS) celebration. It started and ended at Toddy Jones Park with a walk through Fort Malden in between.

Const. Steve Owen instructs local students on bicycle safety as part of the County-Wide Active Transportation System (CWATS) celebration. It started and ended at Toddy Jones Park with a walk through Fort Malden in between.

“It’s great to be here to reinforce active transportation through CWATS,” DiCarlo told the crowd of roughly 300 students that participated.

Students came from both Amherstburg Public School and General Amherst High School.

DiCarlo outlined paved shoulders and trails that have been installed in Amherstburg in recent years, including paved shoulders on County Road 5 (the portion of Concession 2 North between Middle Side Road and Texas Road), County Road 18 and the launch of the Cypher Systems Greenway.

“All of these will support cycling, walking and more active transportation in Amherstburg,” said DiCarlo.

Jane Mustac, manager of transportation planning for the County of Essex, said it was a chance to celebrate with their partners including the seven county municipalities, ERCA, the WECHU, Ministry of Transportation and others.

Students from General Amherst High School walk through Fort Malden during the June 8 CWATS celebration in Amherstburg.

Students from General Amherst High School walk through Fort Malden during the June 8 CWATS celebration in Amherstburg.

There are approximately 150 kilometres of trails in Essex County, said Mustac, noting that it took since 2012 to create that much. The widening of County Road 18 from Meloche Road to Concession 6 South to include bike lanes means people can get from the Willowood campground to Fort Malden on bicycle, Mustac pointed out.

The County of Essex dedicates about $1 million per year towards CWATS and partners also contribute. Not only does it go towards infrastructure, but education and outreach are included. The celebration in Amherstburg was the largest, Mustac added.

Students participating in the CWATS celebration walk along the Detroit River inside of Fort Malden National Historic Site last Thursday afternoon.

Students participating in the CWATS celebration walk along the Detroit River inside of Fort Malden National Historic Site last Thursday afternoon.

“We went out with a bang,” she said. “This is our last stop and they made it count.”

Mustac encouraged people to get out and use the trails.
“Try them out,” she said. “Let us know what can be improved. We are looking forward to the next phase.”

For more information on the County-Wide Active Transportation System, visit www.cwats.ca.

Second annual CWATS celebration highlights connecting communities, staying active

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The County-Wide Active Transportation System (CWATS) was celebrated around Essex County last week with Amherstburg being the last stop on the tour.

The Amherstburg stop was, however, reportedly the largest.

The CWATS Celebration came to Toddy Jones Park and Fort Malden National Historic Site last Friday afternoon with six classes from Amherstburg Public School joining in. Cathy Copot-Nepszy, health promotion specialist with the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU), said the “community celebration” wasn’t just about infrastructure but also about connecting communities and staying active.

More trails and bike paths are built every year, said Copot-Nepszy, and each community within Essex County celebrates staying active and staying in shape. The county is also collecting data to see if the new infrastructure is changing behaviour and getting more people out and about.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo and members of town staff lead Amherstburg Public School students through Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada last Friday afternoon. It was the second annual County-Wide Active Transportation System celebration with Amherstburg being one of the seven Essex County municipalities where celebrations were held.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo and members of town staff lead Amherstburg Public School students through Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada last Friday afternoon. It was the second annual County-Wide Active Transportation System celebration with Amherstburg being one of the seven Essex County municipalities where celebrations were held.

Jane Mustac, manager of transportation planning for the county, said partnerships with each community allow the CWATS network to grow. She touted the benefits of staying active, not just from a health perspective but from an economic perspective as well.

“Cycling is big for tourism,” she said.

Not only is the county trying to create a network across the region, they would like to see it go internationally as well. Mustac outlined efforts being made to put bicycle lanes on the new Gordie Howe International Bridge, when it is constructed.

Const. Steve Owen, the community services officer with Amherstburg police, told the students that it is important to be active but it is also important to be safe.

“You’re smaller and quieter than the cars,” said Owen. “Stay safe.”

Const. Sean Gazdig also joined Owen in riding with the CWATS Celebration participants.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo and Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale were also on hand with DiCarlo pointing out such CWATS accomplishments as a paved shoulder on County Road 20. He said the municipalities, the county, ERCA and the WECHU all team up to help people stay active and healthy.

“This event reinforces the town’s commitment to the CWATS charter and the CWATS master plan,” the mayor stated.