Ron Smith, executive director of the Colchester Regional Development Association
HILDEN – Those wanting more information on an interchange project for Hilden will have a chance at an open house next month.
Colchester Regional Development Association and municipal representatives will be available at the open house, which will be held at the Hilden Fire Hall on Feb. 13 from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Maps of the various scenarios of the proposed routes will also be on display.
Ron Smith, executive director at the development association, said public input is important to the project, which has been ongoing for about four years now.
“We’ve got a study coming to an end this month where we looked at if we could meet the Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal’s regulations, and if the land connecting to the highway could support an interchange route,” said Smith, adding the study also looks at the impact on the community.
“This will all be presented at the open house and we want to include the public so they can see if this is the type of infrastructure they would like to see,” he said.
The idea behind the interchange is for a more direct route from the Veteran’s Memorial Highway to the Truro Industrial Park, which would divert truck traffic away from the McClures Mills and Willow Street area.
It’s been a project a Colchester Regional Transportation Committee identified four years ago to improve, in the long term, transportation access and viability.
“It was one of about 19 or 20 projects identified and at the same time, we knew there were gateway dollars available through the federal government, so we put that forward as a project that could be recognized as a gateway project,” Smith said.
The open house will give residents a chance to see if the project benefits coincide with what they want to see in the community.
Smith said most of the estimates on the cost of the interchange, even from the preliminary stages, are between $20- and $28-million.
“It is a major project and right now it’s strictly conceptual.”
All are welcome to attend the meeting.