The City of Windsor has alleged that the Ministry of Transportation moved ahead with the building of the Herb Gray Parkway drainage system without formal approval from council.

The Herb Gray Parkway construction. Credit: Di Bedard.

“Under the Drainage Act, any changes to municipal drains have to be approved by council,” said France Isabelle-Tunks, senior manager of the City of Windsor. “There’s work happening without that step being taken.”

The City is worried that construction could create flooding. In a report submitted to council on Tuesday night, staff said, “The drainage systems in the area are being altered by the Hon. Herb Gray Parkway work and the City is doing their due diligence in order to protect the City’s municipal drains against potential flooding and/or liability upstream and downstream.”

This report also posed the question: “Who has the responsibility and liability for municipal drains that exist through the Herb Gray Parkway?”

The City’s deputy solicitor, Wira Vendrasco, said drains within the jurisdiction of the parkway are the responsibility of the Ministry of Transportation.

Council has decided to have a third party review the project’s drainage works “to assure adequate capacity is provided,” Vendrasco said. The review will cost $40,000.

“We’re going to make sure at either end that our interests are taken into account,” Tunks said.

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