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Olympic nuisance claims have now spread past transit. Last year, Susan Heyes was awarded $600,000 for the disruption she suffered during construction of the Canada Line. (The decision is under appeal.) Other businesses in the area have launched a class action seeking similar redress. Now Mario’s Gelati has launched its own nuisance claim against the Vancouver Olympic organizers and three levels of government seeking damages for business interruption due to road (not transit) construction during pre-Olympic fever. Mario’s claims it was promised the disruption would last only one month, but it actually took seven months.

With billions of dollars’ worth of infrastructure projects underway across the country, will we see an equally large wave of nuisance claims? And if so, will governments legislate them away, rather than leaving the claims to multiply in the courts? That’s what they did when sewer backup claims multiplied…

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