Menesetung Bridge Association searches for funds to complete final project

menesetungbridgeHEATHER BOA Bullet News GODERICH – The volunteers who have methodically restored the rail bridge over the Maitland River have just one more project to complete.

Since 1990, the Menesetung Bridge Association has converted the old CPR rail bridge to a walking trail and repaired concrete piers on the bridge, which was built in 1907. It has also maintained 3.2 km of trails on land it leases from the Town of Goderich and Township of Ashfield-Colborne Wawanosh.

“Over the years we have repaired and reconstructed the aging concrete components of this structure to allow for the safe passage of the hundreds of users, of tourist visitors who walk, cycle and ski in this facility all season,” Rod Lafontaine told Huron County councillors earlier this month. He asked councillors to consider a $10,000 donation to help repair the fifth concrete pier on the bridge, which lies at the high water mark and serves at the boundary line between the town and the township.

The work is estimated to cost more than $89,000, which will be offset by a $39,000 federal grant.

“This is the last major structural requirement on the restoration program for the bridge that our volunteer committee will be undertaking,” he said.

Deb Shewfelt, who is a county councillor and the mayor of Goderich, told council the bridge is a tourism draw for the entire county.

“It shocks me. It’s thousands of people that come from all over and it’s one of the things that’s starting to get people to stay over to see other things in the county. It’s not just a Goderich thing,” he said. Goderich is expected to contribute $15,000 to the project.

Huron County councillors referred the request to its 2013 budget deliberations, which are currently under way.

The county’s CAO, Brenda Orchard, is currently creating a policy on how council will handle requests for grants from local organizations.

Written by on February 28, 2013 in Ashfield-Colborne-Wawanosh, Goderich - No comments

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