Maintenance hole covers await top-coating to grade. DON RICKERS

Repairs to Pelham Street underway for over a year

Elaine Awram has followed the progress of the roadwork outside her Carriage Hill condominium at the corner of Hurricane Road and Pelham Street, north of Highway 20, since 2020.

“It’s a minimum of a year and a half,” she said. “I don’t know a lot about construction, but is this normal? We expected it to be completed in the spring, but now they appear to be digging it up again.”

She is a bit alarmed by the maintenance hole covers in the area of Pelham, Hurricane, and Shorthill, which are currently protruding above the surface of the roadway, and the ongoing presence of orange construction cones lining the street.

Awram is not unappreciative of the efforts of the public works department.

“We had a water problem—sewer water in our backyard—and they resolved that.”

Jason Marr, Pelham’s Director of Public Works, told the Voice that the road contractor has concrete crews currently at work on the roadway catch basins.

“There was a utility pole that had to be removed by the hydro company,” he said, “and there were some fill-in areas that couldn’t be completed with the concrete work last year.”

The main project was to put a new storm sewer down the road, said Marr, and that was completed a year ago. He was waiting for the spring to do the topcoat of asphalt paving.

“Unfortunately, that’s a piece of work that the general contractor doesn’t fully control, because they subcontract the job out,” said Marr. “The concrete infill work should be another day or so, and then once that’s completed, the paving contractor will be coming in to do the milling and the final topcoat paving. My understanding is that that will happen in the next couple of weeks.”

Due to wet weather during the installation of the storm sewer, the contractor was instructed to delay the final topcoat paving until 2021.

“When the asphalt gets wet, it’s very hard to compact. The best practice in that case is to let it sit for a year,” said Marr, who noted the presence of Town of Pelham snowplows on the roadways, which could have damaged the topcoat had it been applied last fall.

“The contractor set all the manhole frames to an inch and a half below the final grade. Basically, they had to come back this year, around those manhole rings, and adjust them up to the final, actual grade, which will be done when we do the topcoat.”

Summertime means road construction aplenty, which translates into difficulty getting asphalt subcontractors lined up because they already have busy schedules.

“We’ve been told by our general contractor that in two to three weeks, the roadwork will be completed,” said Marr. Charlton Construction Group, a Hamilton based company, is overseeing the work.