Petrolia Line construction takes an extra week

Birnam Construction crews working on the water at the corner of Petrolia Line and Greenfield Street in November 2015.


If you were hoping to drive on nice smooth pavement on Petrolia Line next Monday morning, you’ll have to wait.

Mike Thompson, Petrolia’s Director of Operations, confirms the reconstruction of Petrolia Line won’t be complete by Nov. 22 as laid out in the contract with Birnam Construction.

The company had asked for an extension last week. However, town officials turned them down saying Birnam had been confident throughout construction they would meet their target and they were going to hold Birnam to that.

Thompson says it was clear even before the regular Tuesday meeting to update their progress that the target wouldn’t be met.

“They’re not going to be done,” Thompson told The Independent late Tuesday.

For each day the construction is delayed, Birnam will pay the town $1,000.

“The way it works now is the curbs will likely go in tomorrow (Wednesday) and weather permitting at the end of the week we’ll see the final grading for the “A” gravel. Then starting next week, they’ll be paving and putting in sidewalks,” he says.

That should probably take the entire week.

Thompson says businesses will have access to their stores while the sidewalks are being poured with planking.

But he suggest some may want to encourage people to use back doors if they have them.

Thompson admits it is not what the town wanted, but he says the work will be completed soon. “We wanted to be open for Starbright Christmas, it turns out that’s not going to happen,” he says.

But he says the delay shouldn’t affect visitors since the theatre has been directing patrons to take the Centre Street detour. “Tat way they don’t have any confusion for their patrons.”

Birnam will have to put up the signs directing traffic to the downtown. They were blown down during the high winds last week.

And Thompson says drivers should watch social media sources so they know when the paving is taking place. The intersection of Tank – Oil Street and Petrolia Line will have to be closed again for a short time so the work can take place.