l’Ami’s Garden Center upset by slow bridge constructionThursday, March 21, 2013 by: Jamie LyleMonday evening’s regular meeting saw the owner of l’Ami’s Garden Center appear before council to plead his concerns and frustrations.
Roadwork, specifically on a bridge over the Lavase River, was initially slated for two months of work until completion that began in November has nowhere near reached a point of partial reconstruction or completion.
The bridge, located on the South end of Lakeshore Drive near the old Highway to Callander, has had a detour for what feels like an absorbent amount of time.
l’Ami’s Garden Center will begin its season shortly as spring fever and the demands of local gardeners will bring the peak to this seasonal type of business.
Its owner, Case L’Ami, is concerned the detour and reconstruction, so far behind schedule, will severely impact the roadside traffic and casual shopping behaviour of some customers who simply conveniently pull off the road to peruse and shop his beautiful gardening facility.
The business owner pointed out he was not an engineer but is seemed that cold weather, even mechanical breakdowns, didn’t seem like an adequate enough excuse in this day and age when city crews are certainly able to repair and operate in extremely cold conditions in short order.
Another presenter at council suggested the idea of the famed Bailey Bridge, designed for rapid deployment and short term use, perhaps re-routing transports and allowing small vehicles to use this method might alleviate some of the concerns.
While the idea is simply a suggestion, it would be interesting to know if many of these types of bridges are available as it seems the military and forestry/firefighting ought to have a few.
L’Ami’s concerns highlights the undertow of concerns of many North Bay residents that council is far too willing and accepting in their dealings with contractors who rarely start and complete work on time, maintain prudent schedules and for that matter, costs in relation to city contracts.
This is all the more prudent as many, under their breath, are assuming that the announced major renovations at Memorial Gardens, a large project in recent memory, will become marred up in similar circumstances that could see lengthy delays to the much anticipated renovation and arrival of the new hockey team.
However, this is speculation, albeit as often as not, situations that are preventable or not, seem to arise.
The council suggested that they could help the business owner with expanding and enhancing road signage in the area, however, as the detour is long and not necessarily along the way, it may be of little consequence to certain convenience and curb appeal of the business.