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Construction resumed at the corner of Matonabee and Gitzel Street, Monday. - Danielle Sachs/NNSL photo

Road work returns

Danielle Sachs
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The start of summer is officially here and with that comes inconveniences beyond millions of mosquitoes, such as road construction.

After a long winter Yellowknife's roads need work. Filling potholes and grading gravel need to be completed before it gets too cold, but there aren't any major road delays for travellers on the calendar yet.

"There's always some maintenance work that needs to be done on the highways," said Earl Blacklock, Department of Transportation spokesperson.

According to Blacklock, there's only one project so far that will delay drivers for any amount of time.

Ingraham Trail reconstruction is due to start this summer, and Blacklock said Yellowknifers heading out to cabins or campgrounds at Prelude and Reid lakes could experience minor delays.

"We try to maintain traffic flow as much as possible," said Blacklock.

"But the work does need to be done, the gravel road has to be upgraded to handle the kind of traffic that's on it."

The Ingraham Trail Realignment project is due to start in July. The $16-million contract with Det'on Cho Corporation has yet to be signed, but Blacklock said it should be finalized any day now.

Blacklock said he anticipates the work on the new road will start around the Vee Lake turnoff.

The City of Yellowknife is planning a few road projects for the brief summer months.

Work is continuing on replacing the sewer lines underground, mainly around Matonabee and Gitzel Streets. Niven Phase VI and VII are due to be completed by the end of summer. Knutsen Court and 41-A Avenue also have minor roadwork scheduled.

Mayor Gord Van Tighem said crews are checking the ground to make sure it's thawed. If parts of the ground are still frozen it can cause buckling on the paved street.

"There's major reconstruction near Matonabee Street," said Van Tighem. "It's going all the way down Gitzel Street."

The mayor said it's an ongoing process that is never finished.

"It's like the Energizer Bunny," he said. "It just keeps on going, and going."

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