A Thunder Bay city councillor will ask his colleagues on Monday to restore the maintenance of laneways in the city’s residential areas.
The program was scrapped earlier this year as a cost-cutting measure, but according to some residents it is a necessary service, especially in neighbourhoods where driveways are accessed through a back lane.
"We've been in this house for 40 years,” resident Linda Adamson said. “They used to collect the garbage in the back lane, so the city was responsible for snow removal, grading, and all of that. But when the garbage went to the front, it was up to the people on the lane if they want to keep it open to remove the snow, which we have done.
“We have done that for a lot of years. But the issue around grading is that the city has little graders, which are meant for back lanes…. our lane is only 16-feet wide, and there's a sharp turn at the corner."
As for the possibility of hiring private contractors, Adamson says she has been told by some that they may not be able to perform maintenance work because of city regulations and the size of their equipment.
"The back lane is really a city street so they are restricted to the rules that the city sets for the back lane," she said.
Starting the program up again would add about $56,000 to this year’s budget. Councillor Joe Virdiramo is presenting a notice of motion asking for it to be restored.
Neighbourhoods affected are mainly in older parts of the city including the Westfort and Current River wards, and parts of Mariday Park.