© Photo special to The Guardian
Main Street, Alberton, P.E.I.
ALBERTON — Safety and liability concerns were at the heart of the town of Alberton’s decision to replace the cobblestone along the Main Street sidewalk, Alberton Mayor Michael Murphy said Monday night.
The mayor opened the monthly meeting with a prepared statement about the July decision and acknowledging it had caused some concern in the town.
The decision to replace the cobblestone, he said, was due to the deteriorating condition of the sidewalk.
He said the cobblestones were snow and ice traps in the wintertime and were uneven with depressions of up to three inches between the curbing and the rest of the sidewalk.
“In this day and age where we can easily be held liable in account of unsafe walking areas, we are required by law to practise due diligence,” the mayor insisted.
“Whenever we recognize there is a safety issue, or when we receive complaints we must act upon them, as failure to act and remedy the situation puts us liable.”
Alberton Business Association president Geoffrey Irving, who led a small contingent from the business community, said he appreciates the decision was based on safety concerns, but he expressed the association’s disappointed the town had not consulted or advised the businesses before proceeding with the project.
Murphy and Coun. Natasha Dunn each presented a proposal on new uses for the old cobblestone.
Dunn suggested a cobblestone path along the town pond and Murphy proposed a design in cobblestone by the town cenotaph along with a couple of walkways of cobblestone leading to the cenotaph.
No decision was made on either proposal.