July 7, 2020

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City hires consultant to improve Portage and Main concourse

PHIL HOSSACK / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS</p><p>The underground at Portage and Main. City hall has awarded a local firm a contract to detail changes that are needed to the concourse.</p>

PHIL HOSSACK / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

The underground at Portage and Main. City hall has awarded a local firm a contract to detail changes that are needed to the concourse.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 10/8/2018 (697 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

City hall chose to suspend awarding the contract for the Portage and Main redesign until after the October election, but the consulting contract to detail improvements to the underground concourse has been awarded.

Local firm SMS Engineering, which was awarded the $72,545 contract Thursday, will be required to develop an upgrade plan for the electrical, mechanical and structural components of the underground, which is city-owned property, and the building envelope including openings and entrances.

The project does not include Winnipeg Square, the adjacent underground mall, which is privately owned.

This is the second part of the planning work council authorized in October, when it set aside $1.5 million for planning work on the concourse, $1.5 million for a plan to reopen the intersection to pedestrians, and a further $500,000 for new sidewalks, curbs and trees for the plaza area in front of the Richardson Building.

The contract for the detailed redesign of the intersection was to have been awarded last month, however, after council decided in July to put the question of opening the intersection to pedestrians on the Oct. 24 ballot, the administration suspended the process. City officials disclosed last week the contract would not be awarded until it receives instructions from the new council, which will likely be determined by the outcome of the plebiscite.

SMS Engineering will be required to produce a plan on how to modernize the concourse and deal with several problem areas identified by city hall, including water seepage and poor storm drainage, site access, connections to adjacent privately owned buildings, and how the work can be completed while still being opened to the public.

According to the original request-for-proposal for the underground work, the winning consultant is required to submit a draft plan by Sept. 21 and a final report by Oct. 12, which is 12 days before the Oct. 24 civic election.

The last council meeting before the civic election is Sept. 20.

SMS Engineering, formerly known as Scouten Mitchell Sigurdson & Associates, has been involved with the U of W Richardson College for the Environment, the Winnipeg Richardson International Airport terminal, IGF Stadium, Assiniboine Park Zoo redevelopment, and the RBC Convention Centre redevelopment.

aldo.santin@freepress.mb.ca

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