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These are the worst roads in northern Ontario, CAA says

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The annual Canadian Automobile Association’s worst roads list for 2024 is out.

Cracks, bumps and potholes make up Widdifield Station Road – the worst road in the region this year according to the Canadian Automobile Association. (Eric Taschner/CTV News Northern Ontario)

Three of the five worst roads in the northern region are in North Bay, Ont.

It is not an award the community wants to boast about, but residents who live near these streets are hoping the distinction may be a catalyst for change.

Northern Ontario’s worst road

Cracks, bumps and potholes make up Widdifield Station Road in North Bay – the worst road in the region this year according to CAA.

The couple Jennifer Amos and Josh Stockill have lived on the rural road.

"I have a motorcycle and it takes you almost a half hour to get from here to the church on Four Mile because there’s so many bumps," said Stockill.

A letter was distributed to the neighbourhood calling on everyone to vote for Widdifield Station to be the worst road and now it is.

A letter was posted around the neighbourhoods near Widdifield Station Road and Chadbourne Drive asking residents to vote for the roads in the annual worst roads contact. (Eric Taschner/CTV News Northern Ontario)

"We actually had to scrap my car because my car was finished just from driving up and down the road," said Amos.

Janet Marcotte, another resident of Widdifield Station Road, said the street has been in bad shape for quite some time.

"It’s been like this for I don’t know how long," she said.

"But if you go over Four Mile Lake Road, it’s beautiful."

Chadbourne Drive, which connects to Widdifield Station Road,is second on the worst road’s list and perennial worst road favourite Premier Road in the city’s south end rounded out the Top Five this year.

"We pay high North Bay taxes out here," said Stockill.

"We pay a high premium on taxes to live in the country and we only get garbage and snow (service)."

He said the city rarely comes out to Widdifield Station Road for any work.

"They do cold patch, but the roads are terrible," he added.

Widdifield Station Road has been voted the worst road in the northern region in the Canadian Automobile Association's 2024 worst roads campaign. (Eric Taschner/CTV News Northern Ontario)

Others in the Top 5

Algonquin Boulevard East in Timmins and Burton Avenue in Greater Sudbury finished third and fourth respectively in the CAA’s worst roads listing for the northern region.

CAA’s northern region includes Algoma, Cochrane, Kenora, Manitoulin, Nipissing and Parry Sound districts along with areas in between.

Officials with the automobile association told CTV News that part of the reason for the campaign is to allow people who have to travel on or live near these roads to advocate for road safety by identifying which ones need improvement and stressing the need more municipal funding.

"There’s 140,000 kilometers of roads within Ontario, so it can be difficult to maintain them," said Brian Pirvu, Community Relations Consultant for CAA South Central Ontario.

"That's why funding is so critical. Over 75 per cent of our members are venting about the state of their roads to, you know, friends, family, spouse, coworkers, but not necessarily to the municipality."

Officials with the City of North Bay said that the repaving of Chadbourne Drive will be completed later this year and as for the region’s worst road, it is to be converted to a granular road.

Staff told CTV News that the repair work for Widdifield Station Road will continue into next year.

"That’s what I’d like to see, is this all fixed up," said Stockill. 

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