Residents battle Cummings Lane construction

Sylvia Bahr
Workers lay curbs on North Cummings Lane, as part of the $890,000 project to reconstruct the roadway, install a new storm sewer infrastructure and add sidewalks on either side of the street. The Construction is behind schedule because of rain and other factors.

Ongoing construction on North Cummings Lane continues to make life difficult for residents.

Closed roads, detours and mud are just some of the obstacles homeowners must tackle every day when trying to enter or leave their neighborhood.

“It is frustrating for us to live like this,” said Nancy Picton, who lives on Cranford Drive. “We only have one way in and one way out of our street, and the mud is so bad that we never know, depending on the rain, if we will be able get out in the morning to go to work or get the kids to school.”

Picton said her husband and some neighbors have resorted to mowing paths behind their houses so they can park their cars on Jadens Way.

“We just cut through the fields to get home,” she said. “We were worried that our cars would get stuck, and this way, we know we will be able to get in and out.”

Efforts to install the new roadway, storm sewer infrastructure and sidewalks have been slowed because of Verizon’s delay in relocating phone cables, as well as rain.

“This year, the weather has not been kind to us,” said city engineer Ken Newman. “Every time it rains, it sets us back two days.”

Newman said asphalt likely will be laid soon after Labor Day.

“We will start on Jadens Way, up to the park, and then a week or so later from there, we will finish going south,” Newman said. “We are hoping that the entire length will be done by the second or third week in September, weather permitting.”

A temporary bus stop has been assigned at the corner of Inglewood Drive and Lori Lane.

Students who live east of Cummings Lane must cross the muddy construction site.

“I waited about 20 minutes, and the bus never came,” Mason Graves, 14, said of the first day of school. “And after school, on the way back, the bus driver said he did not know he was supposed to drop us off on Lori Lane. Now, my friends and I just get off anywhere where it is close enough to our house.”

But not everyone is unhappy with the construction.

“It does not bother me,” said Chris Armstrong, who lives on Cummings Lane. “We had no curbs and sidewalks before, and I think it is going to be great for everyone to be able to ride their bikes and go for walks. People just have to be patient, that’s all.”