Mayor says council has approved airport roundabout

Dave Stewart
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Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee, Charlottetown Airport Authority CEO Doug Newson, and Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Robert Vessey display drawings of the new roundabout planned for the Brackley Point Road-Sherwood Road-Charlottetown Airport intersection.

Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee says the majority of city council decided behind closed doors to proceed with a roundabout at the airport.

The mayor responded to comments in Tuesday’s Guardian made by three councillors who questioned the city’s decision to spend $500,000 on the project when the money should have gone to developing a new well field.


Councillors Jason Coady, Mitchell Tweel and Danny Redmond oppose the roundabout project on those grounds and voted last month in favour of deferring moving to the design phase.

Lee said the airport approached the city and said it would come to the table as an equal funding partner if the project proceeded in 2013. The province jumped on board with its $500,000 and scheduled a press conference last week.

Lee said council was informed of the situation in a committee of the whole meeting. The majority thought it made sense to proceed since the money was there to move forward.

But council has not actually passed a resolution authorizing the $500,000 expenditure. Lee said it’s not the city’s job to announce a project involving the provincial government and if council had passed a resolution authorizing the project that’s exactly what would have happened.

Lee says the $500,000 project will not negatively affect the city’s 2013 public works budget.

“There is no mixed message here. This is how it works.’’

The city estimates it will cost $18 million to develop a new water source and take some of the pressure off the Winter River. That means waiting for federal infrastructure dollars to move in 2014.

While Coady, Redmond and Tweel argue the city should be spending whatever infrastructure dollars it has now on developing the new water source, Lee said the city’s top priority right now is finishing the storm water, sanitary water separation project. The city is still waiting for $3.3 million from the federal government to complete that $9.9-million project but decided to get started anyway. The city is using $3 million of its infrastructure dollars there.

The city is also considering installing water meters on all homes, which would cost the municipal government another $2.7 million.

“We need to stop going at this like drunken sailors. There needs to be a financial plan.’’

As for councillors arguing that the city needs to stop spending money on ditch infilling, Lee says residents in the amalgamated areas of the city were promised the same level of service because everyone pays the same tax rate and he makes no apologies for that.

Geographic location: Charlottetown

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Recent comments

    December 10, 2012 - 17:33

    A lighted intersection would probably do here, no need to go farther than whats required. Put the traffic circles at the intersections of Oak, Kenlea and Ash along Mt. Edward. As no one seems to have discovered there are traffic issues there now, and this new development has not even started. Get a plan together to address these issues before they occur. Let the developers foot the bill for increased traffic problems, or at least be a large contributer to the solution.

  • Come round about on my Island
    December 10, 2012 - 11:16

    I would take even a set of lights at the airport intersection...what a nightmare spot that is. Why we think we need to spend our dollars on things that are at least functional and basically aren't broken like the Esso/Leons section and the new stretch of highway is beyond me. The airport intersection is broken!!!

  • Insult to drunken sailors?
    December 10, 2012 - 10:35

    I am appalled at the insult to drunken sailors. Anybody who knows drunken sailors knows that, by and large, they are much more sensible than our politicians. Here's the test: First, find a drunken sailor (which is much harder than finding a smart politician). Second, ask her or him the following question: If you told everyone that you were broke in debt, and had already identified other priorities, would you then borrow money to build a road? Since even a drunken sailor knows better than to planb' someone, I'd duck right after you asked the question . . .

  • Mandel
    December 10, 2012 - 09:11

    No you mean the Airport came on board offering the $20.00 each person flying out of Charlottetown is forced to pay. So really the public is paying for it on both ends.

  • SG
    December 10, 2012 - 08:53

    Great News, can't wait untill it's finished. I just hope those designing it realize the number of Tractor Trailers that travel on that road. We don't need the narrow, winding roundabouts that we presently have in the City slowing traffic down due to the winding turns.

  • name the road
    December 10, 2012 - 08:38

    Maybe now that this massive spending spree has been unleashed, the city and the airport will name the road leading into the airport.

  • What Gives
    December 10, 2012 - 07:40

    The new PEI slogan: ~~Roads before the environment.~~ Who needs water? You can just buy it at Sobey's. Who needs air? Just get an inhaler if your having trouble breathing. Who needs trees? They just get in the way of the roads. Who needs wildlife? We can't eat it.

  • Islander living in Jersey
    December 10, 2012 - 07:23

    WRONG move! New Jersey is known for all the roundabouts and all the accidents that result from them. Now, they are getting rid of them because of all the injuries, damages and even deaths that resulted from their use. Mr. Lee should consult NJ's DOT (Dept of transport) before moving forward!

    • Stratford Resident
      December 10, 2012 - 11:54

      Please, PLEASE provide something/anything to back up your claims!

  • Settle down there lee daddy
    December 09, 2012 - 21:36

    Federal dollars may not be coming for a long time. The pattern right now is PEI is getting nothing new from Ottawa, enduring higher than other areas Federal job cuts and Harper does not even talk to Ghiz. Since PEI betrayed the Federation of Provinces for the 500 million cash grab bonanza in "investments" PNP rip off the only talk from Ottawa is amalgamation of Maritimes. Mr Lee should knock it off with all the rosy ideas, soon Charlottetown may no longer be the centre of the Universe. In Ottawa they are considering locating the Maritimes office in Summerside when they shut down revenue, according to Harper. thanks eh?

  • airport paying
    December 09, 2012 - 21:09

    "Lee said the airport approached the city and said it would come to the table as an equal funding partner if the project proceeded in 2013." I don't live in Charlottetown but guarantee this isn't how it happened.Smell a rat. Someone on the council who attended the meeting never knew about it until e saw it in the paper. Back room deal! Dirty Dirty Dirty I actually think it is a good place for a roundabout but why lie about it? Stop covering for the right honorable.

  • don
    December 09, 2012 - 20:56

    well not hard to see what is more important. safe water in the ch'town harbor or a roundabout well water comes 2nd. how disgraceful.and that is the CAPITAL CITY HOME OF CONFEDERATION. what a poor sample of leader ship. shame on ch'town.

    • huh
      December 10, 2012 - 10:10

      Why are you overlooking the massive sewer work going on in Charlottetown right now? Why does that not count?

  • Moncton Boy
    December 09, 2012 - 20:36

    $500,000 is what is usually referred to as 'The Tip of the Iceberg'! The current roundabout being constructed in Moncton, which is only a single lane one, has now ballooned to an anticipated budget of $3,000,000. That's right folks---Three Million taxpayers dollars. So you had better dig a little---no a LOT deeper into that back pocket folks. You will find out what the true cost is once the quotes come in and tenders are awarded, including EXTRAS.

    • Marie
      December 10, 2012 - 09:22

      What are quotes and tenders Moncton Boy??? Over here they just lol call a friend hahaha lol LOL