As costs climb, Petrolia scales back Y plans for 2023

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The plan to put soccer fields, a washroom, a splash pad and more parking at the Petrolia Y just got more expensive.

Oct. 12, Petrolia council approved a $1.7 million plan which will see only some of the work completed for the project.

The town had originally expected to spend a $700,000 grant, and $233,000 from a budget surplus to complete the soccer fields, washroom, splash pad – which will be paid for by the Petrolia Kiwanis Club over 10 years – and a new yoga and cycling studio addition on the community centre building.

In a report to council, Dave Menzies, director of parks, recreation and facilities, said 31 companies showed an initial interest in the project and eight bid on it, but the rising cost of construction is pushing the cost of the work up.
He suggested – and council agreed – to put off the yoga/cycling studio and do some of the work this fall.

Cope Construction won the tender to complete the infrastructure work of the project including building a new access off Tank Street to the new, 100-space parking lot which will be between the road and the new soccer fields. The company will also put in the infrastructure for both the splash pad – which is expected to be open in May – and the washroom facility.

Acting Mayor Joel Field says the new fields will be tiled and levelled with the grass being planted in 2024. The large amounts of soil dislodged by creating the fields will stay on site, saving some cash and creating a toboggan hill down the road.

But the project won’t be completed this year with large parts being deferred including “asphalt paving of the new parking lot and driveways, seeding of the grassed areas, mulching of the garden areas, and the installation of the soccer pitch fencing,” Menzies writes in his report.

Council agreed that $1.35 million be spent in the 2023 budget year, with some of the cost of the work done – about $352,316 – being paid in the 2024 budget year.

The town will use the grant, the money it originally set aside for the project, $275,000 from the Tank St. reconstruction budget, and $145,809 from the service infrastructure budget. The town will use $273,000 from the Y reserves in 2024 along with $352,316 in tax dollars to pay the rest of the tab.

Menzies says early in 2024, the project engineers will release another tender for the washroom, pavilion and concession stand with construction expected in the spring. The splash pad will be installed after that.

Menzies says the cost estimates for that work will be discussed during the 2024 budget sessions which normally begin in November.