Under the lights: Nighttime roadwork to be tested this summer

Be patient as crews finish up road work before winter, says transportation minister

The Newfoundland and Labrador government will try paving after dark this summer in an effort to ease traffic congestion during peak driving periods.

Al Hawkins, minister of transportation and works, told the legislature on Wednesday that the effectiveness of nighttime paving will be tested on portions of the Trans-Canada Highway between Kenmount Road in St. John's and the Salmonier Line.

Concord Paving of Carbonear has been awarded the tender for the $2.5-million pilot project.

Throughout the project, Hawkins said, the Department of Transportation and Works will determine the cost-effectiveness, value and impact on motorists.

While drivers have complained about traffic jams because of pavement patching or other roadwork during rush hour, contractors have defended doing road work during daylight hours, saying it is cheaper and safer.

Companies expressed concern that vehicles would not slow down when approaching a construction zone at night, and that workers would not want to be on an evening shift.