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Temporary fix recommended for Saint John residents impacted by erosion

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WATCH ABOVE: There may be some temporary relief on the way for a number of beleaguered residents in West Saint John. As Global’s Andrew Cromwell reports, affected residents still aren’t pleased – Apr 1, 2016

 

There may be some temporary relief on the way for a number of beleaguered residents in west Saint John.

The people along a portion of Sand Cove Road feel it could just be a matter of time before the ground underneath their homes gives way.

Land has moved, homes have shifted and the road in the area has been reduced to one lane.

Resident Willa Mavis says the problem dates back to about 2003, when residents were connected to the municipal water system.

“Then suddenly, all of these beautiful bubbling springs that had been utilized by the homeowners continued to bubble but the water wasn’t being utilized,” Mavis said.

Staff is recommending that a series of wells be drilled in an attempt to buy time until a more permanent solution to the problem can be found.

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The wells will help relieve water pressure in the soil.

“Way too little way too late”

Mavis speaks for the group of homeowners and says they’re happy something is being done.

“Its a little bit like the little boy sticking his finger in the dike,” she said. “They’ve just suddenly realized there is a hole in the dike and lets stick a finger in it, but its way too little and its way too late.”

There is no money budgeted for the project but, if approved by council, funding would be diverted from another infrastructure project in the city. Time is of the essence.

“Everybody knows in spring a lot of things move when the frost comes out of the ground — so this is going to be important to help alleviate some of that pressure now and until we get the permanent fix in,” said councilor Bill Farren.

That permanent fix still hasn’t been decided upon. Mavis feels the city would rather move the road than find a solution for residents.

“I feel that we’ve really been strung out here. I really truly do,” she said.

The residents, and councilor Farren still believe a breakwater is the best solution.

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“[It will] protect the homes that are there and it also protects the infrastructure the city has,” Farren said.

City Council plans to discuss the matter Monday.

 

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