Plagued by problems since 2011, when cheaper contractor struggled to do the work
While significantly increasing the cost of the work, the new deal should ensure chronic problems that arose over the last three years are avoided.
That's also about double the winning bid submitted by the DeAngelo Brothers in 2011, a U.S. company that struggled each year to complete the work on time, and without kicking up the sort of dust clouds that negated the benefits of cleaning the streets.
Ward 2 Coun. Jacques Barbeau said the current bids are closer to what the city was paying before 2011. He also likes the fact the work is going to be split between two companies, helping ensure the work can be completed on schedule.
“We're paying more for the contract, but the dollar value is probably where it should be, anyway,” Barbeau said.
And Ward 1 Coun. Joe Cimino said the DeAngelo Brothers needed so much help each year to complete the sweeping, it ended up costing significantly more than forecast.
Barbeau and Cimino also called on staff to let neighbourhoods know in advance when their neighbourhoods will be swept by the street sweepers, so residents can prepare.
“We should give people a heads up to get cars off the road,” he said.
Under terms of the 2011 contract, the winning bidder was required to clean 616 kilometres of city streets within 15 working days, or three weeks. However, a 2011 staff report said that numerous complaints had been received about dust storms created during cleaning, the “poor quality” of the sweeping and the length of time it took to complete the contract.
Staff also said they believe that the contractor “arrived in the city with insufficient equipment to complete the contract within the designated timeline.”
The city’s annual budget for spring cleanup is around $850,000, which includes street-sweeping operations. Street cleaning normally begins in April, weather permitting, with the goal of being finished by the long weekend in May.