By Buffy Bolivar
City officials have released figures estimating that New Romford is now running up to 60% capacity following the Dino-Day Disaster several weeks ago.
All sewer lines have been repaired, and water and power have been returned to nearly the entire city. Some of the older parts of Downtown, Bexton, and Dukes are still without full services. Water and power are expected to be returned to everyone by the end of the week.
The majority of main roads have been repaired for traffic, but most side streets are still unusable. City officials estimate it could take the next several months to a year to repave the streets. Dr. Amazing and ATOM Labs are building machines to help repair the streets in less time. “Nothing too fancy,” Dr. Amazing said. “Just some drones to strip the streets and to pour cement in one fell swoop. No AI (artificial intelligence) in them, so they won’t turn evil.”
The bridges on the other hand will take several years to repair, especially the 4th Ave Bridge and the Judith Bridge. They both collapsed during the disaster, and given their historic nature, there are likely to be legal battles. “Already there’s talk about how to improve them,” said one unnamed city official. “They need better structural support, but we got to do it in a way that preserves their history. That’s going to be a challenge.”
Most businesses have reopened to some degree, but many may not even reopen. The 300 block of 24th Ave was hit especially hard, and the costs to rebuild everything, in some cases the entire building, may be too much for business owners. Keiko MacNamara of Keiko’s Treats lost everything. “I lived above my bakery and came down to work everyday,” she said. “Now the whole building is just gone. I just don’t know what I’m going to do.” Right now, MacNamara is staying with relatives in Norwoods. She’s hoping her insurance will help pay for a new bakery in another building, but that could take months.