The Regent Street and Prospect Street intersection sees approximately 47,000 vehicles each day, but this summer that number will take a dive when three road projects get underway.
“We’re basically going to be renewing what’s there for infrastructure,” said Jon Lewis, the city’s traffic engineer. “We’re going to be digging the road up and putting in new water and sewer lines, new pavement, new curbing and then a new wider sidewalk.”
Estimated to run from June 1 to Aug. 31, the work will also see dual left turn lanes from Regent to Prospect Street along with the concrete being swapped for high-performance asphalt.
Regent Street to Wayne Squibb Boulevard will also be repaved while the Regent Street underpass will be removed and replaced with one with a higher clearance.
“The clearance is posted on the bridge and folks know what the limits are,” says Josh Fox, resident engineer with the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure. “But it seems that once in a while someone will squeeze through and try to fit underneath it when they shouldn’t.”
“We needed to replace what was out here but at the same time we might as well make it better as we have the opportunity to do so,” said City of Fredericton traffic engineer Jon Lewis.
Stuck in the middle of the projects is the City Motel.
Staff at the 55-room facility say it’s already difficult enough for clients to get in and out of their parking lot and that upgrading the intersection is coming at a bad time.
The City Motel is located directly beside the Regent & Prospect Street intersection Jeremy Keefe
The City Motel is located directly beside the Regent & Prospect Street intersection
“It’s our peak season June, July and August,” said Will Philips, who works in the Motel’s office. “It’s the peak revenue season for any motel so that’s our biggest concern.”
Acting manager Sherry Forbes says she knows firsthand how the construction will affect travelers entering the city from the east as she makes the trip each morning from Oromocto.
“We’re not going to have a lot of people travelling in here or who want to come through that construction zone to come into the motel,” she said.
A pedestrian bridge will be installed to keep walking traffic flowing and the city hopes that with motorists planning ahead of time, traffic congestion will be kept to a minimum.
“It’s time to start talking to your employers about is there an opportunity to take vacation time or flex time,” says Lewis. “Just thinking about how can you travel differently during those days.”
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