CARBONEAR, NL — The Town of Carbonear recently met with government officials to discuss ways to improve safety for traffic accessing Route 70 from Valley Road.
For several years, the town has advocated for a new ramp that would allow southbound traffic leaving Valley Road to do so without having to pull out in front of traffic headed north on the Conception Bay Highway. School buses travel regularly in that area, given there are two schools and recreation facilities located on Valley Road. The posted speed limit for vehicles travelling south where the overpass meets the highway is 70 kilometres per hour.
The town has brought up the issue with both the Progressive Conservative and Liberal governments in recent years. In 2016, former Liberal Transportation and Works Minister Al Hawkins indicated in a letter that design work for an additional ramp was completed and the project would receive consideration as part of the department’s multi-year roads program.
At the Tuesday, April 10, regular meeting, Coun. Vic Jenkins, chair of the town’s public works, waste management and community services committee, indicated the department is in the process of completing a design for future upgrades to the ramp. The existing ramp was named Sandra’s Run last year to honour local Special Olympian Sandra Smith.
Water Street upgrades
With funding approval already lined up for substantial upgrades to Water Street, the Town of Carbonear is now looking to get all its ducks in order for the next planned phase of work for the downtown area.
At Tuesday’s regular council meeting, Jenkins indicated funds are in place for water, sewer, storm-sewer and street upgrades for the Water Street and heritage waterfront area from the former train station to Bannerman Street.
The town has since applied to the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation for the next phase of work, which would involve some beautification measures for downtown Carbonear. This would include paver walkways for sidewalks, benches, trees and other forms of vegetation.
“We are currently awaiting a response to our application from ACOA and (the province),” said Jenkins.
Fox Farm Campground
Work is underway on a new lease agreement for the Fox Farm Campground.
According to finance committee chair Coun. Ray Noel, final review is underway for an agreement that’s been in the works for quite some time.
“Hopefully that will be taken care of soon,” Noel said, adding the agreement will also address some upgrades for the property.
New economic development officer
The town is preparing to hire a new economic development officer in the near future.
The position was advertised earlier this month, with applicants needing to get their résumés in by April 27.
“Hopefully we’ll get lots of qualified applicants for that position,” Noel said.
Kai Bath retired from the position in February after three years of employment with the town.