Winnipeg awards $180M sewage-plant contract to Ontario firm
Labour representative lobbied councillors to consider slightly more expensive Manitoba bid
Winnipeg has awarded a major sewage-plant construction contract to an Ontario-based firm despite a labour group's concerns that a slightly more expensive Manitoba bid was overlooked.
Council's water-and-waste committee voted Monday to award a $180-million contract to Morriston, Ont.-based NAC Constructors, the lowest bidder on a job that involves upgrades at the second-largest of the city's three sewage-treatment plants, the South End Water Pollution Control Centre.
Before the vote, the Construction Labour Relations Association of Manitoba urged the committee to consider other bids, including a $182-million proposal that involved PCL Construction, which has a Winnipeg office.
Peter Wightman, executive director of the association, said more money remains in the Manitoba economy when local companies receive the work.
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Couns. Brian Mayes (St. Vital), Scott Gillingham (St. James-Brooklands-Weston), Ross Eadie (Mynarski) and Matt Allard (St. Boniface) nonetheless accepted an administrative recommendation to choose the lowest bidder.
Mayes explained his vote by calling contract selection a rigorous, almost judicial process.
The contract is one component of $336 million worth of upgrades to the South End plant.
The work awarded to NAC involves mechanical and electrical improvements at the plant, a new substation, a new control system for the plant, new chemical-electrical and grit-screening buildings and repurposing decommissioned components to further digest sewage and control odour, a city report says.