A major storm channel located on a diagonal under the "Queens Arms" intersection (where Capital Drive, North River Road and Lower Malpeque Road meet) needs to be replaced. Some sections of the storm channel are nearing the end of their lifespan and some seams are no longer fully sealed together. Not replacing the storm channel could mean the possibility of pipe failure or erosion of the soil surrounding the storm channel, either of which could cause the road surface to collapse.
To be proactive and prevent any serious issues, the City of Charlottetown will be working with a contractor to replace the storm channel in a planned and scheduled manner. As a result, a full closure of the intersection will be in place beginning Sunday, September 17 for approximately two weeks (weather dependent). The full closure will help expedite the number of days there is a construction impact at the intersection.
The City appreciates that this project will be a major disruption and frustration for area businesses and the traveling public, but it is necessary that this storm channel be replaced proactively instead of reacting after the storm pipe (and potentially the road) collapses. The approximately 75-year-old infrastructure needs to be replaced as part of the planning for the next 75+ years.
The Public Works Department is available for anyone with questions or concerns relating to the project at: 902-894-5208.
The City of Charlottetown appreciates the public's understanding and patience during this project.
What is Involved in the Work at the Intersection?
The main work will involve the removal of the existing diagonal culverts and reinstating the area as necessary to ensure a properly compacted road bed. The new storm channel alignment will vary slightly from the current position of the old culvert at points in the crossing. A trench approximately 40-feet wide will be dug through the intersection for the new storm channel to be placed. Any old pipe outside of the new trench will also need to be dug up and removed as it cannot be left due to the possibility of future collapse. A new concrete box culvert (with an outside dimension of approximately 1.8 metres high by 3.6 metres wide or 6 x 12 feet) will be installed.
Why Does the Intersection Have to be Closed Completely?
There are a number of reasons the intersection needs to be closed. The following will impact space in the intersection: the trench for the new storm channel; the trenches for removing the old pipes; the positioning of excavation equipment and trucks for soil replacement/removal; a large crane truck with stabilizers to lift new concrete box sections over the power lines and into the new trench; and trailers to supply new box sections to the crane. There would be very limited room to try and maintain traffic flows safely around such activity. The work would require constant changes in traffic lanes and patterns as the project progressed and, if the intersection were only partially closed, it is estimated that the work would take 5-6 weeks versus the 2-weeks that is anticipated.
Will This Work Impact Sidewalks Around the Intersection?
The contractor will try to maintain pedestrian access, but there will be times throughout the two-week project that sidewalks in the area will be closed. For example, when the full 40-ft trench has been dug diagonally across the intersection, pedestrian access will be impacted. The City will issue updates, when possible. To stay up-to-date, follow the City on facebook and/or sign up for traffic alerts through the Charlottetown Alert System.
What Are the First Steps?
Work started at this site a few weeks ago to create a temporary diversion for storm water during the major construction. The diversion is of a limited volume capacity applicable only for a short duration. Addressing proper, long-term volume capacity, the new main culvert will still be diagonal through the intersection.
Digging diagonally across the intersection will begin on Sunday, September 17. The contractor will be working diligently to complete the work as soon as possible. They understand the impact this will have on area business and the general public. They expect to be working long days, seven days per week, and are motivated by limiting the time they have a large rented crane on site. It is not feasible to do 24-hour construction. The primary labour resources and management staff are limited and will need to rest between shifts. As well, there are accommodation businesses in the area that would be subjected to overnight noise.
What About Businesses in the Area of the Construction Site?
Area businesses will be open and accessible. The City will be messaging the media and the general public about the intersection closure daily, including the message that businesses are still open and accessible from one direction. Signage will be in place around the construction site indicating that businesses are open. Traffic control personnel will be on-site directing traffic and permitting motorists through who indicate they are visiting a business in the area.
What About Suggested Detours?
Because the intersection will be closed, motorists are advised to detour around the area unless travelling to a business near the construction site. To direct visitors and residents, the City has mapped detours and will be placing road signs for the suggested detour routes on each normal passage through the intersection.
To download the maps, click: here.