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Winter road maintenance hearing in Warren

 

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10/30/2008

 By Kara Herlihy

The town of Warren came up with several compromises regarding winter maintenance on several town roads at a public hearing held Tuesday, October 28. The roads in question were subject to site visits last Saturday and were subject to discontinuance pending the hearing.

Several residents of the various town roads were present at the hearing to ask questions and provide input on the town's winter road maintenance. Among them were Whitworth Road, Shepard Hill Road, Sugarloaf Hill Road, Blueberry Lake Road, Applewood Road, Roth Road and Cockleburr Farm Road.

MAINTAIN THE ROAD

Residents of Whitworth Road asked if there was something they could be doing differently to make the town road crew's job easier and therefore continue to maintain the road through the winter.

Safety concerns including the ability for the large plow truck's to turn around were discussed, as they have been forced to back down narrow steep sections of the road in the past.

Residents said the town has been maintaining the road for 77 years and there has never been an issue with the trucks on their road before. They further indicated that the road is no steeper than West Hill Road or the Access Road, and they have never complained about damage incurred by the plow trucks.

TANDEM TRUCKS

Select board member Andrew Cunningham indicated that the issue is the narrowness of the road rather than the grade and that dual axel tandem trucks often get stuck in the soft ground while attempting to turn around.

Select board chair Burt Bauchner suggested a meeting between the residents and Warren Department of Public Works Director Barry Simpson to address their concerns and come up with a fair compromise.

Compromises were also arranged for winter maintenance on Shepard's Hill Road, including the removal of several posts and barbed wire fencing. The town also agreed to bring gravel to the site.

LARGE MAPLE TREES

On Sugarloaf Hill Road, residents agreed to take down two to three large maple trees, to provide full access so the trucks are able to make the turnaround. Gravel will also be used, and the town will grade a portion to provide more access to turn around.

On Applewood Road, an arrangement was made where landowners would smooth out a corner by the leach field, allowing a broader area to dump snow so access will not be blocked by snow banks.

Compromises were also made between residents of Roth Road and Blueberry Lake Road to allow the trucks to turn around and dump snow without blocking the road. The town also discontinued the winter maintenance of Cockleburr Farm Road, but said they will consider the road again once several conditions were met by the landowner including removing a stone wall and several branches obstructing access.

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