Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Priority Road

Since the name of this blog is "Life on a Priority Road," it's only fitting that I share with you what this priority road looks like these days.

It all started in early August with a letter in our post box about major reconstruction of the road and utilities to commence in two weeks.

And so it did.

The normal two lanes were reduced to one. (The street is wide enough for about 2 1/2 cars by design. If a car is parked on the street one would naturally have to slow to allow oncoming traffic to pass.  And it works.  Speeds are kept reasonable through the village.)  A stoplight at each end of the construction let vehicles through in one direction at a time in the one lane.  The other was left cleared for the work to commence.

I thought it was so funny that these guys in the trenches swept up after themselves every day.  In a construction zone.

Except for the one-direction-of-travel traffic, and getting out of the driveway being sometimes awkward and interesting to time, depending on which way we wanted to go, life was uninterrupted.  Until they dug up the utilities in front of our place.  Parking was, well, wherever we could find it.  In the beginning we had some kind neighbors with larger front lots or long driveways that would give us a place to park over night, but most often we had to park down the street and around the corner on a side street.  
Our garden gets a major overhaul, too.  More pictures on the extreme nature of that later.

With the first set of utilities looked to, the trenches were filled and we had our driveway back.  But.  The entire street was blocked off.  Only construction and local traffic allowed.  I like to call this our gated community.  And since most of the work had moved down the street, we enjoyed a brief period of time where there was no traffic, and no construction noise.  We wanted to start having a block party every night.

Then one day, the pavement was gone.

And then the sidewalks.  The crew tried very hard to give us driveway access as much as they could.   At the end of each day's digging they would dump road base and pack it down smooth with our driveway pavement where they could. Ours is a double wide driveway which we share with our neighbors.  Our side of it, however, has some utility stuff that could not be buried so getting in and out required some strict negotiating around a piece of rebar and a construction marker.

And then my mums finally bloomed.  The pink ones on the left side of our stoop are in a precarious position, but still bloomed.

Last week the serious cutting started.  On Thanksgiving day the crew stopped by the house and said that we would need to move our cars to the side street, and that it would probably be two weeks before we had driveway access again.

They have dug right up to the garden pavement exposing still more utility lines, and in the case of the houses with no garden in front, the digging is right to the foundation.  

Work on our electrical lines has required a surgical cut through the garden, making a hard corner, exposing the foundation of our place. This is right out our front door.

 All the rocks that used to line our foundation are now in the garden.

Kitty thinks she's coming out.

 The original flyer says this is going to take 8 months.  We are in the fourth.  They may have been right.