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Summer road-work headaches continue

The full reconstruction of William Street is a $2.3-million project being undertaken by the township as it replaces underground services. [Steve Kannon]

Summertime, and the livin’ may be easy, but that sentiment doesn’t usually apply to driving, as construction detours make life anything but easy. For drivers in Woolwich, however, two of the biggest impediments to travel – construction work at Listowel Road in Elmira and Sawmill Road west of Conestogo – should be wrapped up by month’s end.

That doesn’t mean it’s all smooth sailing, however.

The township is still working on some projects at this point, the likes of William Street and Blue Heron Court in Elmira, for instance, with others on the agenda, including new pavement for Floradale Road and the replacement of culverts on Reid Woods Drive, Sandy Hills Drive and Vance Road.

The work on Sawmill Road east of the roundabout, a Region of Waterloo project, is winding down. The region is also responsible for Listowel Road, though the township is involved with the underground services, extending lines into the Southwood subdivision slated for that area of Elmira. The latter, a $1.8-million project, is ahead of schedule, and should be finished by the end of August, says Jared Puppe, Woolwich’s director of infrastructure services.

“Those are the big region ones that have been the biggest traffic challenge,” he said.

Once Listowel Road is reopened, the township will move ahead with the resurfacing of Floradale Road, likely in early September. The goal was to stagger the two projects so both roads weren’t closed at the same time, the better to cope with the Listowel project’s detours, said Puppe.

Construction that has closed the interesection of Listowel Road and Arthur Street in Elmira is expected to be wrapped up by the end of the month. [Steve Kannon / The Observer]
Other resurfacing projects on tap this year include Ruggles Road in Floradale and Eagle Street in Elmira. Maintenance paving is scheduled for Blue Heron Court, Chickadee Court, Grey Owl Drive and Weigel Avenue in Elmira.

In Elmira, the township’s biggest project this summer has been the $2.3-million reconstruction of William Street, which Puppe said is “going quite well” and should be completed on schedule.

The upcoming replacements of three culverts are likely to cause some traffic issues as drivers face detours, but each will be relatively short-lived, with construction lasting four to six weeks, he added.

“We fully expect all of them to be completed this year.”

The $1.7 million in bridge repairs, as with the other road works, should be finished by mid-October. Holdovers from previous years when bids came in above the township’s budgets, pricing on the culvert projects was more favourable this time around – “the stars aligned this year” – with two coming in under budget and the third just slightly over. That left the township with a surplus, with the money to be applied to the upgrading of guide rails.

Also in the works this summer is a the continuation of the township’s sewer-lining project, with a million dollars allocated for the next round. The cure-in-place pipe lining set for late summer and early fall.

“It’s been a really cost-effective program for us,” said Puppe.

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