Construction equipment has been a big topic of conversation in the last year as the city of Winnipeg has begun its long-awaited Crown Construction Project.
It’s been an expensive project that will see tens of thousands of dollars in capital investments poured into the city’s crumbling downtown.
Construction will start in 2021, and will see the construction of a massive highway, the new Winnipeg Transit Centre, the first bus terminal in the city, and a major bridge over the St. Lawrence River.
The project is expected to take at least 10 years to complete.
Some are worried the project will mean less investment in public transportation, and the impact on local businesses.
“I think the project is a huge investment that will take time to put in place,” said Chris Friesen, a city councillor.
He says it could mean fewer jobs in the area.
For now, there are few details on how many jobs will be lost, but Frieser said the project would result in hundreds of construction jobs.
City council is holding a special meeting Tuesday night to hear concerns from the public.
Joe Cimino says he is concerned the city may not have the funds to continue the project as planned.
We need to have the support to do it, he said.
“But we’re going to need to be able to continue with that.
I just think the public needs to be heard on this, because it’s going to have a huge impact on their lives and livelihoods.”
There’s a huge community backlash against the project, with many people expressing concern over the potential for lost jobs and their families living in the downtown.
“There is no way the city can continue this, and it’s really disappointing that we are not seeing the public voice on this,” said Ciminos father, Tom.
They are also worried about the health of the city.
There will be a lot of new health concerns, particularly for the elderly, said Dr. Andrew Sable, a doctor who works in the community.
His own son died in the same area of the hospital in the early hours of January 2.
Sable said the construction could mean the death of a few people.
“They’re going over the edge of what’s already been going on in the past year.
We’re going back to the dark ages,” he said, referring to the years before the project started.
And as for what will happen to the construction workers?
They’re going through a period of unemployment.
That could be up to a year, and that’s not good for the workers, said Sable.
But Fries says he hopes to keep working with the city to make sure that the people who work there are being protected.
As for how many construction workers will be affected?
That’s still up in the air.
Ciminos says he doesn’t want the workers to be unemployed.
If you want to find out, call 311.