Construction on St. Margarets Bay Road won't be completed on time
'This is basically as big as it gets for a road construction project,' says municipal spokesperson
Even with construction crews working seven days a week, the road, water and storm sewer work on St. Margarets Bay Road in Halifax won't be finished on schedule.
The Halifax Regional Municipality wanted the work finished by mid-October, but instead the work should be finished two weeks late, at the end of October.
Construction was slowed down when crews unexpectedly found old, damaged water pipes underground and had to dig up swaths of rock to install storm sewers.
"There's really old water infrastructure that maybe wasn't clearly marked," said Nick Ritcey, a communications adviser for the Halifax Regional Municipality. "Or the infrastructure was in worse condition than expected and needed to be replaced while the road was dug up," he said.
No penalty for delays — yet
Since these construction hiccups were not the contractor's fault, the company will not have to pay the municipality $5,000 a day for missing its deadline.
The construction contract with the municipality contains a clause that allows the city to charge the contractor for delays.
But as long as the contractor finishes the work by the end of October and there are no further delays, the contractor will not be forced to pay up, said Ritcey.
"This is basically as big as it gets for a road construction project. There's new asphalt, new sidewalks on both sides of the road, new curbs and gutters, new water mains, storm sewer … so it's half road construction, half water work and we do this at the same time so we don't have to rip up the road twice."
Drivers need to plan ahead
St. Margarets Bay Road between Quarry Road and Douglas Drive will be closed to through traffic, although people living in the area will have access to their driveways. Customers will also have access to businesses on the route.
Motorists are asked to avoid this area while the construction is underway. A signed detour will be in place to assist people who need to drive in the area.
There have been numerous traffic delays in Halifax this summer as road construction was underway throughout much of the municipality. Ritcey said people just need to be patient a little while longer.
"St. Margarets Bay Road is certainly a major artery to get into downtown Halifax, so unfortunately people will have to take a little bit of extra time in the morning and expect a little bit of extra time getting home after work."