Newfoundland and Labrador's Minister of Transportation, Nick McGrath, said to expect delays on the Outer Ring Road during this busy back-to-school week and into this Fall.

Reconstruction work on a highway bridge along the ORR near Groves Road began Tuesday. The 1-million dollar resurfacing job is being carried out by Can-Am Construction.

"We try to stagger our tenders to not have the work in all different places happening at the same time," McGrath said.

A matter of stats, not schedules

He added that the company had just finished another road work project in Bay Bulls on the Avalon's Southern Shore.

Still, McGrath said it was a matter of statistics, and not the work schedule of the company, that led to the decision to schedule the ORR work to begin on Sept. 2. 

"We try to arrange it to be as, like I said, as inconvenienced, as passengers and motorists are. We try to do as little as we can in inconveniencing them, but unfortunately you do get some inconveniences."- Transportation Minister, Nick McGrath

"We get about 20-thousand vehicles per day in July and August [along this stretch of the ORR]," said McGrath.

"In comparison, there are about 19-thousand vehicles per day in September, so you are actually getting about 100 vehicles per day less."

Despite the first week of September being busy in terms of the reopening of many metro schools as well as the university and colleges kicking into full swing, McGrath said the timing of the work makes sense based on the thousand-car difference.

"Doing this after labour day made more sense than doing it in July and August," he said.

"We try to arrange it to be as, like I said, as inconvenienced, as passengers and motorists are. We try to do as little as we can in inconveniencing them, but unfortunately you do get some inconveniences."

McGrath said he hopes that his department has given motorists enough time to make alternate arrangements.

The works is expected to last the full month of September.

Both east and west lanes of the ORR will be reduced to one lane.