‘It blows my mind’: Heaving Winnipeg sidewalk not fixed weeks after calls to 311, injury

A Winnipeg man is upset after a heave in the sidewalk in front of his home that’s already led to one injury, remains unfixed more than two months after he began reaching out to the city over concerns someone could get hurt.

Jon Waldman first reached out to 311 about the heave — which he said at its worst lifted some two inches off the ground — on Aug. 13.

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Despite getting a response from the city, Waldman said nothing was done until he reached out to 311 again late last month when, just as he had feared, someone tripped and fell outside his home.

Waldman says he arrived home from work on Sept. 22 to find a man “face down on the ground,” being helped by neighbours.

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“He was bleeding profusely. Unfortunately, there was a decent-sized pool of blood on a sidewalk,” Waldman told 680 CJOB’s The Start on Friday.

“It was something that happened too long after I had made my initial report that there was uneven pavers on the sidewalk large enough that someone could potentially hurt themselves, and indeed someone did.”

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Waldman said three neighbours were able to help get the man up, and an ambulance was called.

This time, a day after the man fell and Waldman made his second report to 311, he says a city worker came and put up a pylon next to the heave.

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But now, just shy of a month since the pylon went up, Waldman says is still waiting to see the heave fixed.

It’s why he said this week, he decided to reach out to the media instead.

“It’s still a hazard. And especially now as you’re getting into the slippery season,” he said.

“It’s just not acceptable.”

And just hours after telling his story on CJOB Friday morning, Waldman said a city crew arrived to put barricades up around the section of sidewalk.

Later in the day Friday, city spokesperson Ken Allen said the sidewalk is slated to be replaced in the coming days, pointing out recent cooler weather has seen the heave partially fall back into place on its own.

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In the initial email to Global News, Allen said the city’s time frame for sidewalk repair varies depending on the nature and extent of the repairs required, noting a sidewalk deemed to be in “non-hazardous condition” is put on a list to be fixed within a year.

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Sidewalks deemed to be hazardous are addressed within two business days, he added.

Pressed on why the sidewalk in front of Waldman’s home wasn’t deemed hazardous after the man fell, Allen acknowledged an error had been made.

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“Unfortunately in this case, the repair was not completed as quickly as it should have been by field crews,” he said.

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“This was an error that has been addressed with staff, and crews are on-site today working to get that section of sidewalk replaced in the coming days, weather permitting.”

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Ultimately, Waldman says it shouldn’t have taken so much effort — and an injury — before the city addressed the sidewalk.

“I mean, this isn’t a case where, you know, where it’s something cosmetic,” he said.

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“For it to be sitting here now, you know, so many weeks later, and for there not to be any progress – especially now as we’re getting closer and closer to winter — it blows my mind.”

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–With files from Rosanna Hempel

&© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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