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The Fixer: Reader ignores pylon, ends up wading in wet cement

fresh concrete sidewalk

JACK LAKEY/Toronto Star There are no signs of the footprints left in this new sidewalk, on the east side of Vaughan Rd., near Wychwood Ave., when a reader stumbled into the wet cement after dark.

How could fresh cement for a sidewalk be left with only a pylon to warn away pedestrians, instead of barricades?

It’s a question that comes to mind when you find yourself standing knee-deep in it.

Some stories are best told in the first-person, like a reader’s account of an evening stroll last week that ended up with him squishing through newly poured cement on a Vaughan Rd. sidewalk.

To set the stage, he and his wife took their new puppy for a walk, as they often do after he gets home from work.

“As we rounded the block, we get to a construction patch on the sidewalk. In the early evening darkness, the patch appeared as wet gravel.

“A pylon sat in front of the patch, but anyone who is a pedestrian knows it is safe to ignore these pylons in about 99 per cent of scenarios in this city.

“The patch extended to the street, so my wife and I decided it would be safer to walk through it rather than around it and into traffic with a rambunctious puppy.

“As my wife bent down to pick up our puppy so she doesn’t drag wet dirt into the house on her paws, I went ahead and stepped into the patch. The next thing I know, I am standing knee-deep in concrete.

“I rush home to wash it off, warning other pedestrians along the way. My leather work shoes are ruined, and I am hoping for the best for my favorite pair of jeans, now soaking in the bathtub.

“I understand there was a pylon on the sidewalk, supposedly to indicate ‘don’t walk here.’ But whatever happened to those signs that indicate pedestrians must use the other sidewalk?

“It was also my birthday. Great.”

We’ve written before that pylons are the most over-used, inadequate fix for street problems, but it is folly to plunk one down in front of wet cement and hope that pedestrians know enough to avoid it, especially after dark.

Whoever did it should be wearing a pylon as a dunce cap.

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