Editor: When infrastructure projects are undertaken, it is inevitable that there will be periodic inconveniences. Within reasonable limits, these inconveniences must be accepted as part of the much-needed improvement process taking place within Chatham.
It should also be expected that contractors and municipal administration plan accordingly to minimize various disruptions so that life can carry on and that projects are completed promptly but with precision.
It is regrettable that the letter writer’s experience “Construction woes frustrating” (in the Oct. 21 Chatham Voice) with the Wellington Street project has been negative. I do not know all the objective details of the complaint, therefore, no further comment from me specific to that matter is appropriate.
My primary purpose for writing this letter is to affirm the efforts of the contractors and municipal officials as they apply to a similar infrastructure project now in the final stages on my street.
Like the letter writer, my wife and I are seniors and we have had to adapt to the various disruptions associated with sewer separation, excavation, and roadway/sidewalk construction. Our street project is due to initially wrap-up by the first week of November.
Most people do not like disruption in these cases, but this is a small sacrifice in exchange for modern infrastructure. It reminds me of the old saying, “Everybody wants to go to heaven but nobody wants to die!”
Contrary to the letter writer’s experience with contractors, I have a very positive view about the way our project contractor (Henry Heyink Construction Ltd), municipal and supervisory engineers, and associated sub-contractors have conducted this work since early July.
The workers, equipment operators, site managers and city staff have consistently been willing to accommodate vehicular and pedestrian local traffic when possible. They have also been courteous, patient and willing to answer all questions related to the project. In one instance when my wife was carrying grocery bags from her car parked some distance from our house, one of the Heyink workers even offered to carry her parcels to our door (a kind offer not needed).
Thus far, the completed work vastly improves the former condition of the street and is a welcome asset to all citizens who reside here. Notwithstanding the vagaries of weather and those ghastly holidays, I am grateful that my tax dollars translate into actual shovels in the ground to be completed primarily by a locally owned company. Now that’s progress!