FLOODED WITH CASH: City gets $2M from province for sewer project

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Ontario Transportation Minister Glen Murray announces a $2-million contribution to a sewer reconstruction project in Cornwall.

CORNWALL, Ontario - A $5-million Cornwall sewer reconstruction project will receive a boost from the provincial government.

Provincial Transportation Minister Glen Murray was joined by local MPP Jim McDonell, Glengarry-Prescott-Russell MPP Grant Crack and city officials in announcing a $2-million commitment to the project from Queen's Park.

The project will begin this summer and will work to fix aging infrastructure in the Eleventh Street, Grand/Miron avenue area of Cornwall that has experienced a deluge of flooding during significant rain events.

Murray lamented the amount of money senior governments spend on infrastructure, specifically roads, sidewalks and sewers, adding much of it was built in the years just after the Second World War.

"My sister often tells me I'm somewhere between 50 and dead," quipped Murray, adding his real age is 57. "But so is a lot of our infrastructure.

"All that stuff that was built is now past its prime."

The two-year project will involve building deeper sewers in the Eleventh Street area, as well as removing an aging pumping station on Guy Street and building a new storm sewer on Marlborough Street from Second to Eighth for extra capacity.

A storm last summer saw the basements of dozens of Cornwall homes flooded – in many cases because the city storm system in those neighbourhoods also doubles as a regular sewer system.

"As a former mayor I really value something like this," said Crack. "When you have a flood in your basement there's nothing worse."

McDonell welcomed the announcement, but the Tory MPP chided the Liberal transportation minister at the same time.

"We're looking forward to some changes that will see more announcements like this," he said. "We need to make sure that money is there for a lot of facilities."

Organizations: Queen's

Geographic location: CORNWALL, Ontario, Eleventh Street

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