Hastings Road among the worst in Cumberland North

Residents calling on government to fix pothole infested road


Published on May 18, 2017

Greg Smith kneels next to Hastings Road pothole that recently claimed a tire on his vehicle. Smith and other residents have been lobbying the province to fix the road that has caused damage to residents’ vehicles.

©Darrell Cole - Amherst News

WARREN – For a brief moment Greg Smith thought a shotgun had gone off in his vehicle.

Smith was heading for his Hastings Road home one evening recently when his vehicle slammed into one of the many potholes on the road.
It reminded of him of how long residents have been waiting for government to repave the road.
“All I heard was a loud bang and then my tire sensor light came on. Then I wondered how much this is going to cost me?” said Smith. “It’s a similar story for a lot of people out here. Everyone’s probably got a story about how bad the road is.”
Smith is one of a handful of residents on the secondary road that’s been lobbying anyone who’ll listen to repave the road. Like others, Smith feels it’s gone beyond patching.
“They come out here every summer and fill the potholes, but almost as soon as they do it the potholes come back,” Smith said. “It needs to be repaved, repair is no longer the answer. I’ve been here 21 years and they’ve never paved it. All they do is patch it and it never lasts.”
More than $400 later, and a couple of new tires, Smith admitted he’s more cautious around the road’s potholes – many of which are located near the intersection of Highway 6 the Sunrise Trail.
Joe van Vulpen, who represents part of the road on Cumberland municipal council, said he and Marlon Chase, who represents residents on the rest of the road, have been lobbying Transportation and Infrastructure and MLA Terry Farrell since last fall to fix the road.
“The first house I went to on the road last summer while campaigning gave me an earful about the condition of the road,” van Vulpen said. “It was the same at the second house and the third and so on. I know Marlon heard the same thing when she went door-to-door.”
He’s also concerned with the road’s failing shoulders, especially at the end closest to Highway 6. He said it’s also a high growth area with several new homes and has seen an increase in traffic in recent years as parents use it to get to Cumberland North Academy and Brookdale while there’s increased traffic for a relatively new commercial agricultural business in the area.
vanVulpen said he has spoken both to the department and to Farrell and it seems to him that each is passing the buck to the other.
Farrell agrees with vanVulpen and Smith. He too believes the road is in bad shape and admitted to being surprised it didn’t make the list for repaving this year – although he agrees both the MacDonald Road and Smith Road (which are on the list) are both in dire need of repaving as well.
“It was high on my list and I really thought it was going to be on the five-year plan for this year but it didn’t get included,” Farrell said. “It’s obviously one of the worst roads in the riding. It hasn’t always been since I got elected, but it has risen to the top this year. It’s definitely the worst this side of Pugwash.”
If he’s re-elected later this month, Farrell said he will make the road a priority and try to get it repaved. In the meantime, he said, he’s going to work to get some maintenance money to get some repairs done until next year.
darrell.cole@tc.tc
Twitter: @ADNdarrell

They come out here every summer and fill the potholes, but almost as soon as they do it the potholes come back It needs to be repaved, repair is no longer the answer. I’ve been here 21 years and they’ve never paved it. All they do is patch it and it never lasts.

Greg Smith, Hastings Road resident