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Carrier Lane a town road in Clayton after 22 years

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CLAYTON — After years of trying to get their gravel private road turned into a town road, several Clayton residents were happy with the town’s decision to turn Carrier Lane and Carrier Ridge Road into a town road.

“The homeowners have been doing a great deal of work to get this road up to town standards,” town Highway Superintendent Robert D. Boulton said.

Town Supervisor Justin A. Taylor said that during the Town Council meeting Wednesday, the board approved the 19,000-square-foot stretch of road, which connects about six homes to Route 12, as a town-maintained road.

“The board voted to take the road over with no plans other than maintaining it,” Mr. Taylor said. There are no immediate plans for the town to take on paving the road or any other costly upgrades, he said. The issue of the road’s designation has been a continuous effort on the part of the residents for many years. Mr. Taylor said it goes back to at least 1993.

Donald H. McKean of Carrier Lane said the owners of the seven homes along the road have each chipped in financially to help bring the road up to code for town and Jefferson County standards. He said he isn’t sure how much in total they’ve spent since 1993.

“It’s been going on for quite a few years. We’ve been working together to try to meet the standards,” Mr. McKean said.

The town will take responsibility for plowing the road and it now will be accessible for school buses to drive up the street and take children to and from school.

Mr. McKean said the residents hope to enjoy help during the long north country winters with the snowplows digging them out, and most importantly, the children who live on the street will not have to meet the bus on Route 12.

“My personal standing is to try and get the school buses up the street,” Mr. McKean said. “The kids don’t have to go sit and wait at Route 12. They can get picked up at their homes.”

Mr. Taylor said the board approved the road after receiving recommendations from the Clayton and Jefferson County highway superintendents.

James L. Lawrence, Jefferson County Highway Department superintendent, said he has visited the road on several occasions over the past few years, but at the final visit he was ready to submit a letter to the Clayton Highway Department saying the road would qualify with minimal costs.

“It looked like everything had been brought up to standards,” Mr. Lawrence said.

Prior to the inspection in June, he said, the small road had several problems, including inadequate width and a lack of space at the end of the road to allow a snowplow to turn around.

He said the decision ultimately was up to the town.

Mr. Boulton said the residents did a good job of hauling in stone, fixing a sufficient base for the road of about 24 feet, securing a right of way of about 58 feet and building proper drainage systems to prevent the road from washing out.

“This is a win-win for the town and the people living on this street,” Mr. Boulton said. “The nice thing about this is further down the line this road could lead to more houses and further development.”

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