Government is investing $33.5 million in three programs to improve roads and rinks in Nova Scotia.
The province is fulfilling its commitment to double the Gravel Road Capital and Rural Impact Mitigation programs to immediately help Nova Scotia motorists.
Another $32.5 million in funding for these programs will see improvements to more gravel roads sooner throughout the province. This includes purchasing new equipment such as graders, backhoes and excavators to enable the additional work to happen.
This new funding is in addition to the $31 million already budgeted this fiscal year for these two programs, bringing the total investment to more than $63.5 million.
“Gravel roads make up about 35 per cent of the provincial road network with many Nova Scotians travelling on these roads daily,” said Kim Masland, Minister of Public Works. “This new investment will help Nova Scotians get where they are going safely and efficiently through improvements to our network of our more than 8,400 gravel roads.”
Along with rebuilding gravel roads, other repairs include brush-cutting, pavement patching, ditching, shoulder gravelling, guardrail repairs and shoreline protection.
The province is also investing in the new $1 million Rink Revitalization Fund to help communities make much-needed repairs and upgrades to aging rinks. The fund will help arena owners and operators with projects such as replacing boards, upgrading refrigeration, improving seating and renovating canteens.
“Rinks bring people of all ages together, support health and well-being, and create important jobs and economic opportunities,” said Pat Dunn, Minister of Communities, Culture, Tourism and Heritage. “The Rink Revitalization Fund will help these important hubs continue to serve their communities, especially in our rural towns.”
Applications for the Rink Revitalization Fund will open in the coming weeks. More information on the fund will be available at: https://cch.novascotia.ca/
- the Gravel Road Capital Program is increasing annually from $20 million to $40 million
- the Rural Impact Mitigation Program (RIM) is increasing annually from $11 million to $22 million
- the cost to repair a gravel road is about $100,000 - $125,000 per kilometre; once a gravel road is properly repaired, it can service a community for up to 15 years
- department staff evaluate and prioritize the gravel roads that need the most work, taking into consideration factors such as road condition and traffic volumes
- the province has already invested $1.67 million in sport and recreation infrastructure in 2021-22 through the Recreation Facility Development Grant; applications for that fund will open again in early 2022