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Altona town councillors hope to get some one on one time with Manitoba's Infrastructure Minister when municipal leaders gather for their annual convention in Brandon later this month.
    
They want to talk to Ron Schuler about upgrading Main Street and Centre Avenue in town, two streets that have deteriorated significantly over the years.

Those two roadways are owned by the province and fall under the responsibility of Manitoba Infrastructure.

"Our goal is to talk to the minister and hopefully put both of these projects on MIT's and the minister's radar," said councillor Tim Fast. "It has been 40 years since Main Street was fully redone."

Fast said the town has had some discussions with MIT officials on the Main Street issue, but there hasn't been much in the way of action.

MIT has suggested the town take over ownership of Main Street as a way to expedite upgrades to the road. Under that proposed move, the town would be responsible for any future construction upgrades to the roadway, including snow-clearing operations.

"We're wide open on this because we'd like to be able to reach an agreement with MIT and get that street upgraded. If it comes down to some kind of partnership between MIT and the town of Altona, I think we're more than willing to look at that."
    
Centre Avenue, which is also owned and maintained by the province, also needs resurfacing and some structural improvements. The street is part of Provincial Road 201 which leads west out of town. That highway was resurfaced from the outskirts of Altona all the way to PTH 32 this fall, however, the section that runs through Altona was left out of the upgrade.

"As I understand, there were some areas of concrete along the Centre Avenue portion of PR 201 that caused some challenges in continuing that paving project through town to Highway 30. Again, we will continue to discuss and hopefully see something happen in the near future," said Fast.

According to Fast, the town is still waiting to hear back from minister Schuler's office about a possible face to face discussion on these two issues.

"There are a lot of municipalities that want to talk the minister and we're hoping we'll be one the communities that get to meet with him," said Fast.

The annual meeting of the Association of Manitoba Municipalities will be held at Brandon's Keystone Centre from November 27-29.

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