City of Kelowna seeking company to construct Highway 97 pedestrian overpass

The city budgeted $500,000 for the bridge’s design in its 2020 provisional budget

A rendering of the proposed building on the Central Green site. (File)

A rendering of the proposed building on the Central Green site. (File)

The City of Kelowna is seeking a builder to submit designs for a pedestrian and cyclist overpass that will span Highway 97.

The bridge would connect Central Green to Bertram Street over the highway.

On Dec. 23, 2019, the city quietly opened a bidding opportunity for the project.

“The consultant will be responsible for detailed design development, construction documentation preparation and tender services,” states the webpage for the opportunity.

The city budgeted $500,000 for the bridge’s design in its 2020 provisional budget.

This number initially struck some councillors as too much, with Coun. Luke Stack saying the number is “remarkably high,” during budget deliberations on Dec. 12, 2019.

Coun. Charlie Hodge added that he found the amount “staggering.”

Rafael Villareal, a city transportation planner, said the costs are normal for a project like this.

“It’s normal for design costs of a major project to be around 10 per cent of the total cost. It’s like that for every single infrastructure project we do.”

The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure made the pedestrian bridge a mandatory project in the site’s 2012 rezoning.

Developers must declare their intent to bid on the project by Jan. 30.

Construction is anticipated to begin in 2021.

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