Ethel corridor taking on increased budget

This year's construction of the Ethel Street Active Transportation Corridor will cost a little more than years prior.

On Monday, council approved plans to make up a budget deficit of $160,000, by moving funding away from a couple other projects that have already been deferred.

Staff had reported that after the project was put out to tender in April, they only heard back from one developer, whose bid was 18% above the city's planned budget.

Infrastructure Director Alan Newcombe says there's an overwhelming demand for local contractors.

"We've had infrastructure grants come forward, so all across BC, and through Western Canada, and the rest of Canada as well, the construction industry is very busy. But probably none moreso than right here in the Central Okanagan," he said.

"It is not typical that we would only get one bid. But I suspect that this may happen more often, and we are actually hearing of other projects in other communities where there are no bids."

He says the city jointly offered up a water main and sewer project on Saucier Avenue.

"We did bundle these projects together to try and encourage more bids. We've seen significant cost escalation in the industry within 2017, and I expect that will continue on into 2018, and probably 2019."

Phase 4 construction will extend the transportation corridor along Ethel Street, between Sutherland and Springfield.

80,000 dollars worth of the design budget for the Sutherland Avenue transportation corridor was transferred, as the project has been pushed back a year for re-evaluation.

The other half came from a pressure valves project that's been postponed to 2019.