August 27, 2014 6:53 pm
Updated: August 28, 2014 7:01 am

Drivers keeping an eye on Saskatoon road repairs

Watch above: road construction season not wearing on drivers

SASKATOON –  The City of Saskatoon warned it was coming but some drivers are feeling the squeeze more than others as they navigate around construction sites this summer.

From cabs to emergency crews, those on the roads are keeping a keen eye on what crews are doing in order to avoid lengthy delays.

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At United Group of Companies, failing to plan is planning to fail. As quickly as the city announces where new construction zones will be popping up, updates go out to the companies fleet of 90 cab drivers.

“That’s key so that we can still get to our calls in the quickest way that we possible can so are there challenges absolutely but they’re definitely workable,” said Troy Larmer, general manager of United Group of Companies.

If you do require a taxi give yourself some extra time especially if you’re heading to the airport where a $2.25 million road construction project is currently underway to improve traffic flow.

Officials also warn patrons that they could be looking at a slightly higher cab fare if  detours need to be taken to your destination but cab drivers will always take the quickest route possible.

“In a perfect world where there is no construction and the roads are free and clear your fare will be indicative of that and it’s all based on distances and time,” added Larmer.

In situations where a few minutes could mean the difference between life and death, MD Ambulance say it’s paramount that its paramedics know which routes to avoid.

“To date, we haven’t had any emergency calls that have been delayed but our alpha which are non-emergent we’ve had some delays there just due to the fact that it’s traffic and we’re not lights and sirens,” explained Troy Davies.

Motorists say they’re willing to bear it and the orange zones hasn’t pushed them to see red just yet.

“Anything they do will make it a little bit better and you can’t do it without obstructing traffic to some extent.”

Spending more money than ever before this summer on road repairs, more than $50 million which is up 47 per cent from last year. The city says having crews work around the clock has resulted in fewer complaints from drivers.

“I think we’ve done an excellent job of just making sure we’re doing it the smart way and the right way and not having to redo it,” said Davies.

Whether the same amount of money will be spent next year on road work, Davies explained he’d like to see a full report of the work completed this season and if expectations were fulfilled.

“We’ve got to get back to fixing the roads and the little things before we look at any major, major projects.”

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