Public input for Cardiff road repairs
|By Mark Arike - Staff Writer | April 5, 2018
About 75 people attended a recent special council meeting in Wilberforce to find out about options for much-needed road repairs in downtown Cardiff.
Four options were discussed at the meeting, and in the end, consensus was that Highlands East should pave about six km of road and ditch the town site. The cost will be about $350,000. A federal grant will contribute $75,000 for culverts. The rest has been budgeted for. “In my opinion, it was well-received by the public,” said CAO Shannon Hunter in an interview. “They [the public] had their chance to ask questions about options that could be available.”
Their input resulted in a unanimous vote by council, said Hunter. The road infrastructure dates back to the early 1950s, according to a report by roads
superintendent Earl Covert. At the time, the road system had “adequate culverts, catch water basins and ditches.”
“Over the years, ditches have been filled in, catch water basins buried and nonfunctional, and culverts eroded, buried and/or sticking out of the ground,” said Covert. “It is agreed that the surface of the roads in the town of Cardiff needs to be replaced.”
Environmental supervisor Stewart Hurd reported his concerns about surface water runoff with the current infrastructure.
“Without the ability to do so (as originally designed) the potential for surface water to add to the existing groundwater table may increase significantly and further enter into the sanitary sewer/sewage pumping station via basement weeping tile/floor drain connections,” said Hurd. “In turn, this additional water may be a potential contributor to the frequent number of days in which the sewage pump station/lagoon capacity is exceeded.”
In an interview, Mayor Dave Burton described the roads as “tired.” “They’ve done their job,” said Burton, adding the pavement is broken and there are potholes. He stressed that the recent repairs to the town’s water system had nothing to do with the need for road work.
A lot of the work will be done in-house, said Hunter. A tender will be issued for paving and a few studies need to be completed. The municipality will begin ordering materials immediately and completing paperwork for contracts. Hunter was unable to say what the impact on traffic will be at this point, except that residents will face a summer of construction.
MARK ARIKE is a reporter for The Highlander.