If Wallace work goes on much longer, construction workers will earn squatter’s rights

From: Darren D. MacDonald, thenorthbaybay.ca staff

NORTH BAY – With the announcement of construction on Wickstead, the City of North Bay is worried that the prolonged work in the area may have serious consequences.

“The construction in that area of the town started in the Wallace area and it has sprawled over to Wickstead,” explains Grey Terrence, Chair of Engineering, Public Works and Environmental Services. 

“If work doesn’t wrap up soon, legally that land will belong to the construction workers.”

This North Bay specific law has been in the books ever since the Pinewood incident of ‘48.  To avoid lawsuits, the City of North Bay rewards the land of prolonged construction to the workers.  It’s why the street layout in the Pinewood area is – legally speaking – ‘all f%#ked up.’

“It’s much like squatters rights,” says Ron Storm, head of construction at Ronstruction. “If you spend a lot of time in the area, you start to have dreams of it. You hurt every moment you aren’t with it. You must have it.”

Morale for construction crews has been down since, due to a legal technicality, the prolonged Cassells construction did not stay prolonged enough to give construction workers rights to the land. 

“I don’t think there’s anything outrageous about the city upholding their own law,” shrugs Ron. “Why shouldn’t we let men build houses in the middle of the street?”

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