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Worst-road title up for grabs

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CAA President and CEO Mike Mager stands at the  corner of St. James Street and Ness Avenue as CAA launches its 3rd Annual Manitoba's Worst Roads Campaign.

KEN GIGLIOTTI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Enlarge Image

CAA President and CEO Mike Mager stands at the corner of St. James Street and Ness Avenue as CAA launches its 3rd Annual Manitoba's Worst Roads Campaign. Photo Store

While potholes continue to grab everyone’s attention this spring, officials at CAA Manitoba are looking at the bigger issue regarding Manitoba roads.

The national automobile association officially launched its annual ‘worst roads’ campaign Tuesday morning. The announcement was made on St. James Street, which holds the dubious distinction as being one of the worst roads in Winnipeg.

Starting today, Manitobans can vote for their worst road nominee on the CAA Manitoba website (caamanitoba.com/worstroads) or on the association’s Facebook page. People can be specific in their voting, as well, pinpointing a certain section of street and what problems face motorists in that stretch.

Mike Mager, president and CEO of CAA Manitoba, says the organization is hoping to do more than just identify Winnipeg and Manitoba’s worst potholes. He wants to direct the discussion into more meaningful solutions for the province’s crumbling infrastructure.

"It is so much more than just potholes," he said. "It’s about identifying the grossly neglected roads in our city and drawing attention to the problem. Quick fixes like pothole patching aren’t working anymore.

"We need to find big picture solutions."

Last year, over 5,000 votes were cast for 696 different roads in Manitoba. The 2013 ‘winner’ was Victoria Avenue in Brandon, a road that is scheduled for repairs starting this spring.

St. James St. has finished at or near the top of the previous two votes. After being named Manitoba’s worst road in 2012, it finished second last year.

Voting for the 2014 Manitoba’s Worst Roads ends Apr. 23.

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