Council Votes in Favour of Bay St Revitalization


Planning stages for the revitalization of Bay St. could start as soon as tomorrow after council voted 7-3 in favour of starting the project this year.

Originally estimated at $4.94 million, the price grew to $7.4 million with the addition of signature work. Another unexpected $8,571,376 was thrown at the project when only one tender was received by Pioneer Construction Inc. – costing more than $1 million above the latest estimate, and approx. $2.5 million more than was anticipated.

Despite this, Council decided it was important to move ahead with the project this year as opposed to waiting 1-3 additional years.

“Things get more expensive as time passes,” Coun. Gardi said, showing his support for improving the city and enticing people to stay.

Coun. Hillsinger echoed his sentiment, adding that this is an exciting investment into the community.

“It helps us build a place people want to stay in and a place people want to come to. It has trees, good roads, and an appealing environment and it propels us into this century,” she said.

“In an attempt to bring this project closer in line with available funds, the Engineering Division and Kresin Engineering entered into a negotiation with Pioneer Construction to reduce the scope of work,” said a report in the agenda.

As a result, the following items have been removed from the project:

  • Removal of proposed gathering locations
  • Removal of unit pavers in the boulevard (replace with concrete)
  • Removal of concrete curb around planters
  • Reduce the depth of planting bed soil

This reduced scope of work will result in a total tender value of $6,799,476.50.

Both the mayor and Coun. Christian voiced their concerns in regards to the tender.

“This project managed us and we didn’t manage it,” Christian said, while Provenzano compared Bay St. to the Gardiner Expressway in Toronto, saying it lacks scenery, looking like “driving down an alleyway.”

Bay St. will be closed one block at a time starting this  summer to allow changes such as reducing the street from four lanes to two, relocating and upgrading street lights, and streetscape improvements.


  1. What is the fire department going to do about responding to east end calls in the winter when there is one and a half lanes and nowhere to pass?

  2. When is the next election ? Hope its soon this council is going to bankrupt this town. Just resurface the dang street and put the money towards resurfacing other more important streets. OH RIGHT ! Our council does not listen to its people anyway !

  3. Why not get rid of the parking lot at the city hall and move it across Foster Drive and close down Foster Drive to make your streetscape and bike and walking trails. That way our councillors can walk a few feet and get exercise rammed down their throats. Boaters in the marina will have a bit of a park setting rather than being on a roadway. That street is only there to benefit city hall anyways

  4. The only times Bay street is really used at full capacity is after Greyhound games and maybe during rush hour for at total of maybe 2-3 hours per week. That’s conservative and likely less. There will be tax savings with less road to actually maintain. In the future, consideration should be given to turn Queen and Wellington into two-way.

    • Stephen Findlay queen and Wellington are not wide enough to make 2 way, if we have slow traffic with only one lane it could cause more problems i think. Just saying.

    • Carlo Fea Queen and Wellington are plenty wide; not wide enough for the high speed traffic that everyone is used to, but that’s not the point of two lanes. Traffic calming to slow the cars is what we definitely need.

    • Stephen Findlay i look at queen st and picture doing left hand turns at an intersection with traffic coming at you and think this could cause a problem, i would think 2 lanes would be needed for each direction of traffic.

  5. It’s amazing how the city council seems to be making decisions and when you read comments and stuff on posts and other things it sure seems like the public had no part in any of these decisions! Well people remember this come next vote time they will play right now and watch them cry when they get voted out!

    • Mailis Lindbäck Lewis yes unfortunately it seems like the public has no input. However when you’re placing your vote for your alderman, make sure his/her views are YOUR views as well.
      Hard to know at the time, but we are the ones who voted these guys in..

  6. A Liberal bastion of utopian vision. With our money.
    All I can see is lipstick on the pig yet again. Lord help us all.

  7. Oh boy what a circus we have for council nothing but monkeys running this city, our town is going to shit ..i used to love living here now im embarrassed to even say where i am from…clean your acts up city council and listen to the ppl.

  8. Opinions on this matter only matter at city hall meetings. If the residents of Sault Ste Marie stood up United you could make a change and make a difference. An overhaul to City Council is what’s needed, not Bay St.

    • Overhaul the city council, is the best idea, it’s your tax money they are playing with, vote them all out in the next election.

  9. Great to see. While I felt that a 2-way Queen Street would be more impactful, this makes sense because it is in dire need of repair anyway. I rarely see a ton of traffic on Bay to warrant four, one-way lanes, especially when our highways are narrower. Less lanes mean less pavement to maintain and clear. Those against this project should check this out. A really good read.

    • James W. Mills I spoke with the the out-of-town consultants during the open house and pleaded my case but engineers are generally focused on moving mass amounts of traffic, not retail sales. It’s doing the merchants a disservice by not moving forward with something like that.

  10. Good luck getting out of any major event at the gardens. 2 lanes is a big mistake. Already takes long enough to leave there after a hounds game.

  11. It helps us build a place where people want to stay in and a place where people want to come to. It has trees good roads and an appealing environment and it propels us into the next century she said. I think she meant to say we will have one good road because we wont have any cash to fix the other ones

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