Labour shortages have added to the delays in the completion of the 5th Street Bridge project. Photo by City of Courtenay

Labour shortages have added to the delays in the completion of the 5th Street Bridge project. Photo by City of Courtenay

Courtenay’s Fifth Street bridge project completion further delayed

The completion date for the 5th Street Bridge project has been pushed back yet again.

The project, which was originally slated to be completed by mid-October, will now carry into 2022.

In July, the city announced a one-month delay in the completion of the project, due to scaffolding installation issues.

READ: 5th Street bridge completion date delayed by one month

In a statement released Thursday, Oct. 7, the city revised the completion date to the first week in January 2022, citing several reasons.

“Equipment malfunctions, scaffolding install, and labour shortages have all been contributing factors to the delays throughout the project,” reads a City of Courtenay press release. “The factors could not have been foreseen during the planning phase of the project. All schedule delays are being actively managed with the contractor.”

The labour shortage is the key issue for the latest delay.

“An issue across many sectors, a shortage of specialized workers has affected the project’s progress, and prevented additional measures to potentially make up the time, such as working double shifts, or working 24 hours per day,” reads the release. “The contractor has so far only been able to maintain enough crew to work seven days a week, 12 hours per day. The city continues to explore options with the contractor to expedite the work.”

On a positive note, the project remains on budget. According to the press release, there was a provision included in the contract for compensation owed to the city if the project runs over-schedule due to the actions of the contractor.

As for the project itself, in the coming days, the white plastic containment system on the bridge will come down, completing the coating phase of the project. The focus will then shift to the final phase of rehabilitation work and deck repairs. The temporary walkway will be removed and sidewalk access will reopen for pedestrians. Pedestrian access will be maintained at all times across the bridge.

The single-lane alternating traffic pattern will continue until project completion.

The City of Courteney also reminds residents that the downtown core remains open for business during the project, and asks residents to continue supporting their local businesses.

For more information on the 5th Street Bridge project visit www.courtenay.ca/5thstreetbridge