Toledo Blade - Mar 2, 2014 - Winter brings more headaches in ‘Pothole Alley’ - "Rapid freeze-thaws wreak havoc on crumbling city infrastructure"
Pothole Alley refers to a band of midlatitude cities across America’s heartland that are more vulnerable to the effects of severe weather than cities to the far north or far south.
Roads are actually less vulnerable to cracking in the far north, Mr. Franklin said. In Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, northern Minnesota, or North Dakota, for example, the cold is consistent enough to keep them frozen for extended periods, he said.
To the far south, they aren’t salted much because there isn’t as much need. But in Pothole Alley, roads are constantly salted. They can’t be left to freeze over because of how often temperatures toggle above and below freezing — a pattern that places the most stress on asphalt, Mr. Franklin said.
Many more potholes are being formed now. They are expected to continue forming through mid-April. “The thing is, we haven’t see the worst of the potholes yet,” Mr. Franklin said.
There are far more potholes out there than crews realistically can fill until this summer, he said.
Theresa Pollick, Ohio Department of Transportation spokesman, said potholes are typically repaired by a cold patch mix or by hot asphalt. The hot asphalt mix is preferred because it’s more durable. But plants that produce that material often don’t operate during winter months.
My other TT comment:
Many more potholes are being formed now. They are expected to continue forming through mid-April.
“The thing is, we haven’t see the worst of the potholes yet,” Mr. Franklin said.
The potholes could act as natural speed bumps, forcing drivers to slow down and making the roadways safer. But unfortunately, this would adversely impact the city's revenue stream from traffic enforcement cameras. Quite the pickle. We need money to make the roads smooth, so that we can drive dangerously, which provides the city with money.
Another of my comments in the TT pothole thread.
Feb 15, 2014 Blade story about Toledo's 2014 budget.
In November, the Bell administration recommended the city transfer $14.1 million from the capital improvements plan budget — the same amount taken out of that fund to balance the general fund in 2013.
Then Mayor-elect Collins and then-Councilman George Sarantou, who is now city finance director, both said that number should be reduced.
Reducing the amount taken away from street repair to pay for expenses such as police and fire operations was also among Mayor Collins’
However, he is still recommending council approve a 2014 budget that takes $14.1 million away from capital improvements and instead use it for the general fund.
“We are still dependent on the CIP [Capital Improvements Plan] and I truly wish we weren’t because we have a huge challenge with the condition of our streets,” Mayor Collins said. “Also, we are entering a collective bargaining year as well.”
Council must approve the budget by March 31.
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