Burlington’s proposed 2022 capital budget and ten-year capital forecast reveals a lot of good news for Aldershot. Over the next decade the City is planning significant investments in the west-end community.
The work will eventually include major improvements to the fire station, perhaps even its relocation, the twinning of the King Road bridge over the 403, renewal and urbanization of Park Avenue East and Park Avenue West with new curbs, storm sewers and sidewalks, as well as a variety of other projects.
In the case of the fire hall on Waterdown Road, the 1958 structure has undergone a number of upgrades over the years but is now listed as only 0.03 on the Facility Condition Index, which is not good. Unfortunately, this year’s budget documents warn City Council that the budget for the fire hall is “underfunded”.
Among the other work planned for the next few years are a variety of upgrades and improvements to other roads, stormwater systems, and parks.
Aldershot Park, Bayshore Park, Bridgeview Park, Earl Court Park, Fairfield Parkette, Greenwood Park and Hidden Valley Park will all see equipment upgrades that may include new or replacement fences, ball diamonds, playground equipment, lighting or site furnishings.
The big spending in Aldershot in 2022 however will be directed at two projects that are already underway. Preliminary work has started on major improvements to Plains Road West from LaSalle Park Road to Spring Gardens Road. In 2022 it will include resurfacing, curb and sidewalk improvements, bus stop upgrades, a protected cycling lane on the north side of the road and upgraded intersection markings. Also, work will continue on the widening of Waterdown Road north of Craven Avenue. That construction is expected to continue until 2023. The good news is that Burlington is only paying five per cent of the Waterdown Road costs as the remainder is paid by the City of Hamilton.
Capital budgets and forecasts reflect the City’s long-term plan to protect, renew and increase its $5.2 billion in physical assets like roads, buildings and vehicles. As a long-term plan it is developed over years, passed from one Council to another and seldom becomes too controversial. In 2022 alone the City will spend a total of $77 million on capital infrastructure and over the next decade $829 million.
Along with the capital budget and forecast, currently under consideration by Council, is the proposed operating budget which in 2022 totals $284.8 million and if not changed during upcoming budget discussions could result in an increase of 5.45% to the City’s portion of the property tax bill.
The City will host a virtual town hall meeting on Monday, November 22 at 7 P:M to seek public input. Formal discussions among member of Council will take place November 30 and December 2 with the hope of final approval in mid December.
By Rick Craven