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Mount Ogle road repairs to be completed in two weeks

BY JAVENE SKYERS
Observer staff reporter
skyersj@jamaicaobserver.com

Saturday, September 23, 2017

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WITH partial restoration completed on the affected roadway in the Mount Ogle area in St Andrew, a single lane was opened to motorists and pedestrians on Monday. The road repairs are expected to be completed within the next two weeks.

The road, which has been under repair since June due to a breakaway, saw high traffic from both motor vehicles and pedestrians on Monday.

However, while some motorists were still disgruntled with the state of affairs — having to share the road with pedestrians and workers — others were overjoyed that they could finally use the road again.

“It was a struggle prior to now, we are feeling much better and it is costing us much less; and at least we are hopeful because we see things are happening now. It's much more convenient, as before it was very difficult when we had to go by Stony Hill,” teacher at the Unity Primary and Infant School Patricia Smith told the Jamaica Observer on Monday.

She added that it would take an additional 30 minutes via the alternative route, whereas if she traversed the Mount Ogle road the journey would take no more than 15 minutes. She is therefore elated that she is now able to use the road again.

Principal of the nearby Evelyn Peterkin Basic School, Gloria Carter, shared similar sentiments as she patiently awaited her turn to use the road.

“It makes a big difference. I work just down by Mount Ogle there and I had to drive all the way through Burnt Shop and afterwards through Florence Hill; so thumbs up a million times, we appreciate it. And we try our best to be safe, because we know is a one-way traffic lane, but we truly appreciate it,” Carter said.

Mark Benjamin, a representative of the contractor hired for the roadwork, explained that the road was officially opened to single-lane traffic on Monday morning, with motorists and pedestrians being granted access from 5:00 am to 10:00 am.

He said the road should have been closed for work between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm, but they reopened it a little earlier due to the afternoon rains.

The schedule should've remained in effect up to yesterday, when the workmen were to be finished “dumping up” the roadway, Benjamin said.

The representative noted, too, that they could not move forward with asphalting the road until the National Water Commission has completed the installation of pipes beneath it.

But Benjamin said that hopefully, if all goes well and there are no heavy rains, the roadway should be fully restored within the next two weeks.

He added that the new road should not be plagued by the previous problem of a breakaway, as there is a concrete-based masonry and precast wall in place that he said is much stronger than the first, which was a dry-post wall.

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