RESIDENTS of Conniston Road in Kenton-on-Sea have taken to tarring their dirt road at their own expense to the tune of nearly R200 000.
ONE-LANE BLACK TOP: After years of living on a dirt road, some residents along Conniston Road in Kenton-on-Sea decided to have the road tarred at their own expense and soon will have the luxury of living on a smooth, dust-free street Picture: CANDICE BRADFIELD
The project was initiated by Roger Carthew who first wanted the road to be tarred 10 years ago as he owned a holiday house in the same street. Six years ago he asked Ndlambe municipality if they would do it but was told they have no money for capital expenses.
About four years ago he wrote a letter through lawyers to ask if he could tar the road at his own expense and have this taken off his rates every month until it was paid off. He received no response.
Carthew approached the municipality again at the end of the last year as he felt desperate. There was still no money for a road but he was given the go-ahead to undertake the project.
“Richard Pote (director of infrastructure development) was very sympathetic,” he said.
Of the 12 residents in Conniston Road, five are contributing to the costs, said Carthew. Some were not in a financial position to contribute and others who do not live there permanently but just own holiday homes on the street, did not see the need.
“It’s an expensive exercise and you shouldn’t really have to do it,” said Carthew.
However he sees it as worthwhile and part of his kid’s inheritance. He believes that if you want something done, such as trimming the verge or cutting bushes, you have to do it yourself. He said the municipality has said they will contribute by putting speed bumps along the road.
A local firm was contracted to do the job and Carthew said he was “very impressed with them”. Owner Justin Wilmot has gone the extra mile and given them a good deal on tarring the road.
The process has taken about three weeks after bad weather caused a delay. However Carthew said he was very satisfied with the results. The road is nearly complete.
Municipal spokesman Cecil Mbolekwa said the road was already in progress when they received the report on what was happening. According to him, Pote said the road must conform to standard. Even though it is nearly completed, this matter will still be going to council.
“If it meets the requirements, it will be difficult for council to condemn it,” said Mbolekwa.
“We always appreciate contributions made by the public as it helps with the backlog,” he added.