Construction zones can be dangerous places, so it’s usually a good idea for residents and civilians to give heavy machinery and their operators a wide berth.
That applies doubly so at a time of pandemic contagion.
Norfolk County awarded the contract for the first phase of the College Street reconstruction project in Waterford last year. Once Phase I gets underway, social distancing protocols imposed in March in response to the COVID-19 coronavirus will be in force.
“Norfolk County has declared that the College Street project is an essential project,” the county says in an update on its website. “Work is proceeding under this declaration. The contractor will be required to provide a COVID-19 health and safety policy for completing this work under current recommended guidelines.
“This includes social distancing both with other crew members and the public who may approach the job site. We respectfully request that this social distancing be reciprocated by the public towards the crew members.”
Norfolk County awarded the contract, which is worth $3.4 million, to Elgin Construction of St. Thomas in July of last year. The project includes College Street from John Street to Main Street, Sovereign Street West from John Street to Main Street, St. James Street North from Mechanic Street to College Street, and Cottage Street from Mechanic Street to College Street.
On the agenda for Phase 1 this summer – at a minimum — is the portion of the project involving Sovereign Street West from John Street to St. James Street North and St. James Street North from Mechanic Street to College Street. Plans are to complete work left over in the fall in the summer of 2021.
Notifications from door to door will be made on a needs basis, bearing in mind the need for all to social distance at least two metres. This is a major rebuild of the neighbourhood in question. The work will involve the installation of new sanitary sewers, new storm sewers, new watermains, new curb and gutter, sidewalks and new asphalt.
“There is a new watermain being completed as part of the project,” the county website says. “Your existing water service will be connected at the property line to a new service from the watermain. The contractor and our site inspector will notify you of any interruptions to your water supply required to complete this work.
“The contractor will provide a temporary water system for the project. This system will be installed and tested to the same standards of Norfolk County as permanent installations. The temporary distribution system will be connected to your existing service. This temporary system will allow for the contractor to complete the project efficiently and safely while maintaining water supply to you.”
The county adds there will be no interruption of sewer service. Trees that conflict with the new infrastructure or the construction practices needed to install it will be removed.
County project manager Scott Zerbes says more details on Phase II will be shared at a regularly-scheduled meeting of Norfolk council.