Were you inconvenienced by a neighbourhood road closure in early January? Perhaps you were trying to get to Brewer Pool, Brewer Rink, or Westboro Academy on January 10th, 11th, or 12th, 2018, only to be stopped along Hopewell Avenue.
The infill development at 200 Hopewell—between Sloan and Seneca Avenues—caused a road closure on those days for a sewer connect. That’s when private developers obtain permission from the city for a “road cut” so they can connect pipes from a home under construction to the city sewer system.
When this type of work is happening, “The contractor is responsible to notify all the residents on the block affected by the road closure via a letter in the mail box.” That’s what we were told by a city employee. I have spoken with many of the residents on our block, and none of us received a “notification of road closure” letter.
What’s more, the builders hit both a gas line and a water main during their road cut work. It’s pretty scary to hear sirens and then watch the fire trucks stop in front of your home.
To address the water main break, the construction workers put a pump in the hole and left for the day on January 10th. The pump stopped running. It took several calls to 311 to get a city worker to come check the broken water main. Although we went to bed that night with only a bit of water in the construction hole, we awoke to a different reality the next day. The hole had filled up with water and Hopewell Avenue looked more like Hopewell River. Many homes in the block had their water turned off for hours while the city repaired the water main break.
So, what began as a one-day road closure quickly turned into three days of inconvenience and frustration for Hopewell residents. We fell victim to a developer who has no regard for existing residents.
And for the better part of a week, our lives were focused on the infill at 200 Hopewell. It was another case of a single family home being demolished and replaced with a building that was too big for the property. According to the paperwork out front, it’s to be a duplex, with each unit having four bedrooms. Now, I’m no architect or building code inspector, but it looks more like a bunkhouse to me. Take a walk by the site and if you agree, I urge you to email/tweet both the mayor and our city councillor. As residents, we deserve better treatment than this.
Originally published in the February 2018 OSCAR.