After weeks of lineups on the highway, commuters between Saskatoon and Warman only have to wait until the end of September before things get back to normal.
“During peak times commuting back and forth to work in the morning and again in the afternoon, it would back up for at least one kilometre … it added a good 20 to 30 minutes to the commute,” said Kelvin Ooms.
Traffic restrictions on Highway 11 began in the middle of August, when the Ministry of Highways began extending merge lanes on both sides of the highway to accommodate increased traffic from the Pioneer terminal along the highway.
Steve Shaheen with the ministry explained the work is part of a $2.8 million project and includes the construction of acceleration lanes on Highway 11 and paving in Highway 305 and Highway 12 east service road.
Extending the merge lane is meant to give drivers enough space to reach highway speed.
Pylons and a 60 km/h speed zone have been in place since crews started working. However over the past two weeks, Ooms and other commuters noticed work stopped, but the lane restrictions lingered on.
“When workers were there it was understandable it needed to happen, but a lot of people have questions because over the past two weeks there’s been nobody there and questions have been raised as to what’s been the hold up?” Ooms said.
Shaheen said material brought in for the acceleration lanes wasn’t up to standard so crews had to move to a different sight and crush material so it would work with the project.
“Signs had to remain up because of the roadside hazards which included soft shoulders and some sharp drop-offs,” Shaheen said.
Shaheen said the work and the lane restrictions should be wrapped up by Sept. 30.