Construction at the intersection of Hwy. 12 and Loewen Blvd. is to begin immediately as the tender was awarded at Tuesday’s council meeting for the intersection’s renewal project. 

Steinbach City Council received two bids, and awarded the contract to Maple Leaf Construction Ltd. being the low bid at $9.98 million.

Project completion is expected by the fall of 2025. 

The City has also entered into a funding agreement with Manitoba Transportation and Infrastructure (MTI) for the Department of Highways components of the work.  

Councillor Jac Siemens puts it simply. 

“The province is responsible for everything above ground, the City is responsible for everything underground because those are our utilities.” 

The total budget that was set aside for this project was just under $10.4 million, with approximately $4.5 million of that coming from the province of Manitoba, and approximately $5.8 million from the City. 

Councillor Michael Zwaagstra says the intersections along Hwy 12. have been getting upgraded systematically over the years, and this is the final major intersection along Hwy. 12 that is getting a full reconstruction. 

He says this intersection is currently problematic, as it can be difficult to turn at peak times during the day, so it’s great to finally get construction started. 

"This is a major project, that's why the work will continue both this year and next year. It will have a significant impact on traffic, but the end result will be worth it. I'm definitely looking forward to this going ahead and having a much better intersection in the end.” 

This project has been in the design stage for a while as the City first initiated this project back in 2020. 

Mayor Earl Funk says funding from the province was first announced in October of 2021.

“That’s when we took the pictures, shook hands, and kissed all the babies, and we had a great time at that intersection.”

At that time, the expected completion date of the intersection overhaul was the fall of 2023.

“Then we went into the scope of the project and things kept coming up we had to postpone and postpone and postpone, and now we are finally doing it.” 

He says it’s great to finally have a plan that everyone is on board with after pushing it back several times. 

“I dreaded when we would get it back to the study session and then administration would say 'this needs redesigning', and then MTI wasn't quite ready. The hardest thing is when you have a plan, you got a project, and you're going to start in 2023, and then now you hear we're starting in 2024, but before that, it was 2022.” 

He says traffic backing up to A&W and Shell during rush hour will be a thing of the past. 

“That should not be happening anymore. You're going to have two dedicated turn lanes going onto Loewen, two dedicated lanes going from the North side to the South, and then you'll have a left-hand turning lane too. So you'll be able to always move, and going North you’ll have the same thing.” 

He says that once this intersection is built, it will last for decades. 

Funk is very excited to see this project finally happen. 

“We're really excited that this is this is the last link, this is the last intersection that is working lower than it should be working at. Fall of 2025, we'll be able to open it up and it will be able to take the traffic that is that the city hands it every day.”