Season of construction leads to safety concerns in East Gwillimbury
May 28, 2015
By Simon Martin
East Gwillimbury has two seasons right now: winter and construction.
Around every corner there is another road closure, dump truck or pothole. While the construction has long been planned to service the new growth in town, several local residents have raised safety concerns.
On 2nd Concession, Peter Rumplemayr has to navigate a maze of dump trucks, diggers and broken road just to get to his house.
“Oh, it’s a nightmare. It almost seems they are way over budget and they are skimping on safety,” he said.
According to Rumplemayr, construction workers don’t consistently have people flagging the local traffic.
“At certain times, they need more people directing traffic,” he added.
The story is similar for Louise Kreuzer on Doane Road.
The regional road resembles a well-worn golf course with potholes sprouting up like fairway divots.
“There have been major eruptions and massive pot holes particularly down by the Winged Foot development,” she explained.
The potholes are so big that cars have gotten stuck in them and had to be towed away, she said. While the region has filled many of the potholes with hot mix, Kreuzer said that’s not a palatable solution for anyone who has to traverse Doane on a regular basis.
“They are putting a Band-Aid on a gaping wound. It is so temporary it doesn’t last at all,” she said.
Due to the extreme number of potholes, Kreuzer said motorists have to drive extremely slow, which becomes dangerous when dump trucks and construction vehicles whip down the road at high speeds.
“I’m scared about getting rear-ended,” she said.
While Mayor Virginia Hackson said she can understand residents’ frustrations with construction as a 2nd Concession resident herself, the reality is they are living in a construction zone at the moment.
The town has voiced its concern to the region about the quality of Doane and, according to the region’s senior project manager Mark Nykoluk, the road is scheduled to be repaired between the 2nd and Yonge Street by the developer this summer.
The challenge the region faces during the 2nd Concession reconstruction is that it needs to maintain access to all properties.
“We apologize for the inconvenience for people living there,” Nykoluk said.
The region does hear a number of complaints from residents about flagging and Nykoluk said they are doing their best to make sure the contractor is doing their job while keeping people safe.
Nykoluk said there has been a reduction in traffic since the bridge at Rogers Reservoir was closed earlier this month.
On top of 2nd Concession and Doane construction, the region has road closures for construction on Bathurst Street and Bradford Street this year.
The town is also undertaking a number of road repairs. There will be surface treatment for Boag Road from Leslie Street to Woodbine Avenue and Holborn Road from Leslie to Hwy. 404.
Slurrey sealing will be applied to Centre Street from Davis Drive to Herald Road, Eighth Concession between Hwy. 48 and Ravenshoe Road, Boag Road between Warden Avenue and Kennedy Road and Queensville Sideroad between Warden Avenue and Kennedy.
Asphalt resurfacing will take place on Arkinstall Court, Veronica Crescent, Conn Drive and Ramsden Crescent.
Finally there will be reconstruction of Tate Court.
Enjoy construction season.