Listen Live
HomeNewsFrustrations mount among some Sexsmith residents after wintertime fibre line installation

Frustrations mount among some Sexsmith residents after wintertime fibre line installation

It’s a muddy spring for many Sexsmith residents after fibre optic lines were installed in the community over the winter.

As the snow melts away in the Peace Country, muddy yards and streets are often a welcome sign of the summer for residents in Alberta’s north; however, one frustrated Sexsmith resident, Susan Cooper says this year is a little different.

“It’s all down the street on my street, it’s by the church, it’s down by the walking trail, they didn’t cover up the holes,” she says.

Over the winter, telecommunications company Canadian Fibre Optic installed numerous fibre lines around the town as part of their ongoing connectivity campaign across the Peace Region, which left some Sexsmith residents frustrated with the state of their yards as the weather warms up.

- Advertisement -

Sexsmith Mayor Kate Potter says she understands where the frustrations are coming from, and the town has been working “very closely” to get a cleanup project started.

“We tried to work with them very closely, with telecommunications and fibre optics, that’s a federally regulated field and so the town doesn’t have a lot of influence there, but one thing we have found with Canadian Fibre Optics, we continue to work with them, I know they’ve been proactive in the community trying to get the message out that they want to come and fix some of the issues that happened over winter,” she says. “From our perspective, we’ve seen the proactiveness, but of course, it does take time and I think that’s probably the frustration with the early melt this year, it doesn’t look nice.”

Mayor Potter says the muddy season is unsurprising, but through engagement with neighbouring communities who had fibre lines of their own installed, she says the town is “confident” that the mess will be dealt with soon.

“Whenever you do construction there’s always this messy, muddy time that goes with it, but all the other communities were very happy with the repair work that Canadian Fibre did so we’re assuming that they will maintain that same reputation with us,” she says. “There’s a plan in place, it might be a little longer than what they were hoping to get those repairs done, but overall there is a plan in place and things will move ahead and be repaired, we’ve not seen any indication that won’t happen.”

Despite the Mayor’s words, Cooper says she is still frustrated with how the situation has been handled so far, citing a “lack of public engagement” regarding the project in the first place.

“I didn’t ask them to do the job,” she says.”You dug up my front yard, you in the back alley, you drove down it when it was saturated so now I’ve got all these heaves in my backyard so all the water from the snow melt now goes into my backyard.”

In response, Mayor Potter says she is encouraging residents to reach out to the company directly with any concerns when they come up, and ultimately, should residents feel unheard, Potter says to reach out to her directly.

“We really want them to work directly with the company because what the company has represented to us is that they want to repair it and make it right,” she says. “Let us know as a town especially if it’s on public property, it’s not something they have crews driving around looking for something so when they see something let us know.”

Potter adds that while there is not yet a definitive timeline for cleanup to take place, residents can expect to see cleanup crews in the community “within the next number of weeks.”

- Advertisment -
- Advertisment -
- Advertisement -

Continue Reading