Site Accessibility Information Access Key 1 to Skip to Top Navigation Access Key 2 to Skip to the Three One One link Access Key 3 to Skip to City of Winnipeg Main Menu Access Key 4 to Skip to Left Navigation Menu Access Key 5 to Skip to Content area Access Key 6 to Skip to Right Sidebar content area Access Key 7 to Skip to Footer Links
City of Winnipeg
|  Link to the City of Winnipeg French websiteFrançais  |
COVID-19: City of Winnipeg response and latest updates on City facilities and services COVID-19 : Mesures prises par la Ville de Winnipeg et dernières nouvelles sur les installations et services municipaux
Media Releases

August 13, 2020


Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service responds to fires on Barber Street and Smith Street

Released: 7:47 a.m.

Winnipeg, MB – At 2:14 a.m. on August 13, 2020, the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service (WFPS) responded to reports of a fire at a one-and-a-half-storey house in the 100 block of Barber Street.

When crews arrived on scene, they encountered heavy smoke and a well-involved fire on the deck of the house. An attack was launched and the fire was very quickly brought under control. The deck was destroyed and the adjoining house suffered damage to the exterior siding.

The occupants of the house self-evacuated prior to the arrival of crews. No injuries were reported.

The fire was determined to be accidental, caused by the improper disposal of a cigarette butt.

Residents are reminded they should never use a plant pot as an ashtray. Potting soil is a mix of dirt and a number of combustible organic materials such as peat moss, shredded wood and minerals which are combustible. When a butt is put into a planter, it can smolder for several hours. Once the container heats up, it can crack, giving the smoldering material oxygen and the opportunity to spread to other combustibles such as decks, balconies, walls, etc.

As conditions in Winnipeg are very dry at this time, residents should take extra care when disposing of butts. Smoking material should always be extinguished in a proper ashtray or deep metal container. Butts should also never be thrown from balconies, car windows, or disposed of near any vegetation such as grass or brush.

At 4:41 a.m. on August 13, 20202, the WFPS responded to reports of a fire in a five-storey parkade in the 300-block of Smith Street. Upon arrival on scene, crews encountered heavy black smoke and flames coming from a vehicle. The fire was quickly extinguished before it extended to additional vehicles.

No injuries were reported. The cause of the fire is under investigation. No damage estimates are currently available.

Major roadwork on Empress Street concludes

Roadwork included pavement renewals, overpass rehabilitation & new cycling & pedestrian route

Released: 11:12 a.m.

Winnipeg, MB – Today, Councillor Matt Allard, Chairperson of the Standing Policy Committee on Infrastructure Renewal and Public Works was joined by dignitaries from the Government of Canada and the Province of Manitoba to announce the conclusion of roadworks on Empress Street from Portage Avenue to St. Matthews Avenue.

The Empress Street and Overpass Reconstruction and Rehabilitation project was undertaken in phases over the last three years to minimize traffic disruptions. The project included pavement renewals, overpass rehabilitation, and a new cycling and pedestrian route.

The project was primarily funded by the City’s Capital Budget, with additional funding support of $921,000 from the Province of Manitoba, and $4.47 Million of Federal Gas Tax support. The overall project cost is approximately $23 million.  

“In addition to improving road safety, the Empress Street rehabilitation project has created a new active transportation route for the benefit of all pedestrians and cyclists,” said the Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities. “Families and everyone can now easily access and enjoy neighbourhood parks, and stay active while getting around the city. By investing in thousands of projects across the country, Canada’s Infrastructure plan builds stronger communities and supports local economies and priorities.”

“The Manitoba government is pleased to support this major upgrade and refurbishment of the roads and pathways in such a busy retail area,” said Rochelle Squires, Manitoba Minister of Municipal Relations. “We are especially proud of the improvements and inclusion around active transportation, with additional cycling lanes and improved, accessible pedestrian walkways.”

“It is fantastic to see this stretch of construction complete so Empress Street can get back to moving people efficiently in one of the city’s busiest areas,” said Councillor Matt Allard, Chairperson of the Standing Policy Committee on Infrastructure Renewal and Public Works. “Winnipeggers have been patient in all areas of the city as we continue historic investments into fixing our roads and the results can be clearly seen here in St. James.”

As part of the project, the Empress Street overpass was rehabilitated and new accessible pedestrian ramps on both the north and south side of Portage Avenue to Empress Street were constructed.

This project enhanced connections to the surrounding area by incorporating new bicycle paths consistent with the City's Pedestrian and Cycling Strategies, and includes a new bi-directional protected bike lane along Empress Street from the Assiniboine River path that connects to the painted bike lanes on St. Matthews Avenue. There are also new protected bike lane connections to area businesses via Eastway and Westway.

Slope stabilization work was undertaken along Omand's Creek and the Assiniboine River to accommodate the roadwork. The majority of the landscaping for the project and the bridge preservation maintenance work is expected to be concluded by the end of September.

For more information, please see: Roadworks on Empress Street from Portage Avenue to St. Matthews Avenue.

August 13, 2020