A recent decision by the Moncton City Council to deny the Province a noise exemption so that they can work at night on the Hall’s Creek Bridge is a little smelly.

Quite a stink up actually as from what I can tell there is little or nothing intelligent in the decision.

To start with there is Councillor Daniel Bourgeois calling Dieppe residents “Dieppenamese” something that is causing a bit of a fuss (as it well should) for the racist connotations involved as well as the “us vs. them” attitude it portrays and the concept that Dieppe residents’ are either foreigners are might as well be foreigners. For some reason I personally do not think the repercussions of this bit of mouth off is likely going to do this councillor much good, in actual fact it is likely to hurt him not only in any future government type position as well as any future professional life he intends. I do think it was a poor choice of words but even more telling is the fact that there has not been a single bit of remorse or apology that I have heard about to this point.

Let’s move on to the actual work part of this discussion that started it all.

The DOT wanted permission to work at night for between 2 to 4 days depending on weather so they did not interfere with 30,000 car a day traffic that crosses that bridge daily. Not often I say this but hey the province actually had a good idea here.

The reasons the city gave for turning them down were at best bizarre,  and from what I have seen from any comments I have seen, laughed at by the majority of the population. The reason given: It would interfere with the sleep of nearby residents.
Can somebody get me a set of binoculars, or maybe a microscope because I think we are going to have to go microscopic to find neighbours close enough to this location to have their sleep interfered with.

Yes there is a hotel there however those are not residents they are tourists or visiting business men/women etc. and so obviously not the residents the city was discussing, there are a few houses just off King St. but most of them are far enough away that they should not hear the construction either or if they do it should be fairly faint.

Construction on the Main Streets in this City, Mountain Rd, Main St, St. George Blvd should all be done at night except for those areas along those streets which actually are in residential neighbourhoods. Any time the city is doing work on an area that is at all high traffic they should look at the neighbourhood and determine whether it is or is not to residential to be done at night, because all construction that is done at night is that much less interference with traffic during the day. 

Examples of spots where recent construction could have been done at night:

  1. Mountain Rd resurfacing Gorge to Upland
  2. Vaughan Harvey resurfacing Collishaw to St. George.

Both areas have very limited residential all of which is collected around one end of each project and would have created far less traffic tie ups then the way it was done.

The only really heavy traffic area that is being reworked at the moment that is actually in the middle of a residential area is Lewisville Road and Shediac Rd intersection. If some accommodation could have been done with the residents this area as well is exceedingly high traffic however barring an accommodation that area is residential enough to require day work.

The location being compared to the Hall’s Creek Bridge resurfacing is actually the area surrounding the Moncton Hospital which, while it is subject to noise at all hours due to ambulance traffic, is in the middle of a residential area and is an incredibly poor comparison.

The city needs to think ahead and perhaps even go take a look at the areas that are involved in this type of work and do an intelligent think on these types of decisions in the future. Night work is suspected to be quicker, and while immediate salaries may be slightly higher (I am not sure how the industry works) the shorter time frame would usually more then make up for the difference. This would make the project cheaper and faster. It would therefore free up money for more projects and would free up the company doing the construction to work on other projects.

The Council in Moncton needs to look closely at this type of project because the job of council is not to make life more difficult for city residents but in fact to make life easier where at all possible.

This is a poor decision best rethought and hopefully reversed.