Last Christmas was not a very happy one for Andrew Burdi, after a sidewalk snowplow smashed and shattered a stone wall in front of his house.
Since then, Burdi has been battling the city to repair the stone structure that covers the tiny front yard of his Lumsden Avenue home and is unwilling to settle for an offer well below two quotes of at least $ 5,000 for fix it.
Winter will surely come in a day, although so far we have been fortunate to have wonderfully mild weather. When it does, a sidewalk plow brigade will be unleashed to do its job, which often includes gouging the grass on lawns and boulevards.
It bothers people when the lawn they maintain in front of their house is damaged by a stray plow. It is easy to repair with sod or grass seed. But when damage is done to a permanent structure like a stone wall, things can get complicated.
Burdi emailed to say that a plow drove past his house on December 25 and caught an edge of its blade against the stone structure that is flush with the sidewalk, tearing it apart and damaging the wall significantly.
He has since negotiated with the city for the cost of repairing the damage. He got two quotes from local contractors, both of which came in at $ 5,000.
Burdi says the city offered him $ 1,400, then rubbed the wound by issuing a property standards notice on Nov. 22, ordering him to “immediately” repair the damage caused by his plow.
“They admit the fault but will not fix it,” he said in an email, noting that a city employee who recently showed up to tell him about it agreed it was not. just and advised him to present his case to the Star’s Fixer columnist.
“This is absolutely absurd and (the city employee) agreed that it was absurd,” he said, adding that “it leaves my property in shame” and he feels like he has been. “harassed” by the city.
While this may be correct, there is one caveat that complicates Burdi’s claim: The edge or wall of the stone structure is in the road right-of-way, meaning it is on a city property. If the City wants to play hard, it could say that the structure is encroaching on the municipal right-of-way and that it does not have to repair it.
STATUS: I sent a note to the city and received a response from Mahan Nassery, a road and sidewalk supervisor with transportation services. Nassery said there were “ongoing discussions between the resident and the city contractor to reach a fair resolution.”
Looks like the city is handing the problem over to one of its plowing contractors, when in fact they are responsible for whatever goes wrong when a contractor makes their offer.
Nassery went on to say that “although the City cannot deal with the details or details related to claims cases, City staff work closely with snow removal contractors on claims related to the potential damage that may be caused. by snow clearing vehicles.
“There is a complaints process available to all residents online at toronto.ca/claims. Residents who plan to construct materials (including retaining walls, etc.) in the public right-of-way are reminded to inquire about setbacks and bylaws that may affect their placement / location and maintenance, and to plan their construction accordingly.