MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Residents on Arbogast Lane were shocked one afternoon about two weeks ago when their 2.5 mile road was stripped for no apparent reason by the Division of Highways (DOH).
One resident, Ed Lewis, who has lived on Arbogast for 26 years, said when he left for work that morning everything was fine, but he received Facebook notifications that afternoon that things had gone awry and their road had been reduced to rubble. Lewis said that the road was not perfect because it had potholes and other problems but it was much better than what DOH left them with.
“I called up here to the local (DOH) office and come to find out they were going to come back next year if authorization and funding was available,” Lewis said. “You don’t rip up the road until you have a plan to replace the road. This would be ridiculous this winter.”
Lewis said he tried reaching out to the DOH’s commissioners office, but things really didn’t change until State Senator Randy Smith got involved. With Smith’s help, 2,500 tons of asphalt have been approved by DOH to replace the road and they’re going do all the ditching right.
DOH has even begun doing some of the ditching along Arbogast Ln, Lewis said, showing that they are dedicated to remedying the problem. He said one of the things that made him happy about the resolution was that DOH admitted they had made a mistake by stripping his road.
“This is something that they do with roads that have tar and chip, they don’t — it’s not policy to tear up asphalt,” Lewis said. “They made a mistake, yeah it upset us all, but at the same time they’re making it right. And that’s all we can ask for and it will turnout — they’re going the extra step, they’re going to make it better than it was, realizing they were in error and I can’t say enough about Randy Smith and Gov. Jim Justice’s office.”
The plan is for DOH to come out in a few weeks to resurface the road and Lewis was told that once started, the project will only take about a week to complete.
“This is a happy ending story,” Lewis said.