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Jim Watson looking for solution to Ottawa's Hog's Back Bridge

Mayor says he wants to help NCC find money for project.

The Hog's Back Swing Bridge likely needs to be completely replaced, but the NCC doesn't currently have the money to make that happen.

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The Hog's Back Swing Bridge likely needs to be completely replaced, but the NCC doesn't currently have the money to make that happen.

Mayor Jim Watson wants the National Capital Commission to come up with a permanent solution to the Hog's Back Bridge and hopes to help them find the money to do it.

Watson raised the bridge, which has seen emergency closures a number of times summer, at the NCC’s board meeting on Tuesday.

“We need something more long-term for that particular site, because obviously there are fire stations and ambulance stations that use that route as well,” he said.

In a review of the commission earlier this month, the auditor general found they did not have adequate funds to handle their deferred maintenance backlog and had not been clear about that with government.

Watson said he hopes to work with local MPs to help the NCC get the funding it needs to deal with the bridge.

“I recognize there are limited dollars, but we can’t keep having the bridge break down.”

The 40-year-old bridge has dealt with a series of mechanical problems this year as old and failing components needed to be updated.

The NCC’s CEO Mark Kristmanson said the bridge does need a permanent upgrade.

“It’s not only an old bridge, but it’s old technology and it takes tender loving care to keep it going.”

He said right now it is a question of money to find a replacement, but they know they have to handle the problem.

“It will be a priority to get to a long-term solution for the Hog’s Back Bridge.”

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