POTHOLES, POTHOLES EVERYWHERE
By Kirk Winter
If you conducted a brief street corner survey of residents of CKL asking what is the single most important priority for municipal government, the overwhelming response you would get is road maintenance and repair.
CKL is geographically large with thousands of kilometres of public, unassumed, and private roads. When the City amalgamated in 2001, road quality across the new city varied greatly depending on where you lived. One current councillor shared with me, off the record, that in 2001 the best roads likely belonged to the old Verulum Township while the booby prize for battered and neglected roads was won easily by the old Manvers Township.
Mayor Andy Letham, in the last two election campaigns, has talked roads, roads and more roads. The CKL budget has shown the City’s commitment to equalizing and improving road quality across the City with one-third of the total budget allocated to roads.
In a report released to Council on September 10, staff shared the projects remaining for 2019, and what roads will be priorities for 2020.
Royel Paving of Lindsay was awarded a tender on July 16 for these additional projects for 2019 that were added to an already impressive set of repair orders already completed right across the City. Royel has been working hard to complete these roads before Mother Nature makes construction and asphalting impossible.
Remaining 2019 projects
McGill and Slalom Roads
Grey and Tracey’s Hill Roads
McGregor Road and Walmac Shores
Duke Street Bobcaygeon
Projects slated for 2020
Porter and Lifford Roads
St. James Street
Portage Road – CKL 48
Kelly’s Bay Road
Roads within the village of Coboconk
Drum Road East
CKL Road 30
Potts Shore Road
Balsam Grove Road
Pine Ridge Road
Councillors are seen at almost every meeting trying to add roads of concern to the 2020 list, but with an attempt by the City to bring spending under control, the question always asked of the councillor by Mayor and staff is “where within the budget the money would be found for that additional road repair?” That question in itself almost always stops conversation.
That has not stopped Councillors Ashmore, Elmslie, Yeo and Dunn for pushing hard for key road repairs in their districts at the earliest possible opportunities.
If you are tired of potholes and washboard conditions on the road you live on, hopefully your road is on either the 2019 list for completion or the 2020 list. Construction will start as soon as the roads are dry enough and the weather is warm enough to make construction possible.
If you are concerned about the condition of your roads, don’t be afraid to contact your local councillor who can bring your concerns up at the next Council meeting. Based on this reporter’s experience, a deputation of local citizens with a petition in their hands from the people on their road in need of repair almost always seems to get their road added somewhere into the mix, whether it be as an emergency repair this year or a priority repair the following year. Good luck, and happy lobbying.