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Crews have been digging deep trenches to replace sewer and water lines. Photo: David Sommerstein
Crews have been digging deep trenches to replace sewer and water lines. Photo: David Sommerstein

Web extra: Rt.11 construction FAQ

We've received many questions about the extensive construction in the village of Canton. With the help of the state Department of Transportation's engineer-in-charge, Tom Maroun, here are some answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

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David Sommerstein
Reporter/ Producer

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How long will the construction in Canton take?

The Route 11 reconstruction in Canton is almost a two year project. The DOT plans to complete roadwork, sidewalks, and curbs in the downtown village of Canton by November or December, the end of construction season.

Next spring, the DOT will begin work on the section east of downtown, from the railroad tracks to where East Main Street widens near the Sunoco gas station. During the reconstruction of the railroad crossing, Route 11 will be completely cut off and detoured for approximately three to four weeks.

Why does it seem like workers are digging holes and then just filling them back up?

The first phase of the project was to install the water and sewer mains, running under Main Street from the bridge over the Grasse River to the railroad tracks. Crews then had to go back and connect each building to the new mains.

“It kinda looks like we’re digging in the same place every time to the travelling public,” says Maroun. “But we’re just connecting the buildings to the new lines now.”

Also, crews had to fill up any holes or trenches by the end of the day so as to not be a safety hazard to pedestrians or vehicles.

Why doesn’t the construction take place at night so it doesn’t disturb busy daytime traffic?

Village officials requested that most of the construction not be done at night. “They thought the work in general in here,” says Maroun, “with the apartments above and businesses and stuff, the noise level would be too great.”

Paving of the road will take place, in part, at night.

Why did you cut all the trees down and are you going to replace them?

Maroun says the extensive amount of digging involved in the project meant that many trees would not survive. The DOT consulted with arborists before determining which trees had to be cut down. “As soon as you get to the root system of those trees,” says Maroun, “it’s like a shock to their system. They’re never going to come back.”

The DOT will plant more than 60 new trees downtown - “decent sized trees, not tiny saplings”, says Maroun. It’s still unknown whether there will be time to plant them before winter. The new trees will be a mix of honey locust, sugar maples, hackberry, Japanese lilacs, serviceberry, flowering crabapple, and horse chestnut trees.

Will the traffic pattern be different on Main Street?

Not all that much. “It will not change drastically,” says Maroun. The road will be basically the same width, with parking in the same places. There will be a new center turning lane. Maroun says he believes that new lane, along with clearer lane markings, will make traffic flow more smoothly through downtown.

 

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