MEDICINE HAT, AB — Construction to fortify the main sanitary sewer line began on Carry Drive today, forcing many commuters and large trucks through a detour on nearby streets.
The detour currently routes drivers from Crestwood Drive to Cuyler Road along Corbitt Way Southeast and the increase of traffic has some residents concerned.
The road is very narrow and with vehicles parked on both sides of the road, larger vehicles have a difficult time passing each other.
Harlen Hippe, project manager, says the detour will be changing as the project progresses but is difficult because of the structure of the roads.
“The detour has to go for multiple blocks down to Cuyler Road, just because of the ways the roads work,” said Hippe.
The project will be ongoing until the end of September or early October with a short break to open the road for the stampede.
Although construction is just underway, Acting Sergeant Darren Holeha, with the Medicine Hat Police Service Traffic Unit, says he’s already received some complaints about safety in the area and police will checking the area.
"We will be here monitoring that just to make sure that people are safe and as we see here behind us too that some of the streets are narrow with people parking on both sides,” said Holeha. “So you're gonna have to definitely go slower and allow for people crossing the road and more vehicles in the area."
The construction will be going through phases and Hippe says the detours will reflect what area they are working on.
“The detours throughout the roads are actually going to be moving,” said Hippe. “The part that’s closed right now from Crestwood Drive to Carr Crescent will be (closed) about two weeks.”
Eli Hughson lives on Corbitt Way and says he's already noticed issues with large vehicles unable to pass each other and the speed of other vehicles.
He hopes the city might reconsider the detours they currently have in place.
"We're just kinda hoping that they're going to do something different about it,” says Hughson. “Maybe put some tempered speed bumps, signage, maybe detour up Dunmore Road or Southview Drive instead of having it come right through our neighbourhood."
Hughson thinks that if they're re routing the city buses it should be the same for other large vehicles.
"The city bus is not coming down this road, it normally comes down this road and it's not even gonna come down this road right now because it's too congested. I can't even leave my RV out here for a day without the city bus complaining about it because it is too tight for them,” said Hughson “If they're not coming down here, then I don't think anyone else should be really."
Hughson just wants drivers to realize there's children playing in the area and that's something Holeha agrees with.
"Just drive like you would want to be driving in your own residential area so just slow down, be aware and just realize that it's going to be some excessive traffic for these residents," said Holeha.
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