Road Rehab Update -Sidewalk Work Went Sideways
Prince George, B.C.- Prince George spent $7 million dollars on road rehabilitation this year, and that meant 66 lane kilometers of roadway received upgrades and 365 metres of sidewalks were upgraded, but the full list of sidewalk work was not completed.
Blake McIntosh, General Manager of Roads and Fleet has advised Mayor and Council there was a problem with the contractor hired for the sidewalk upgrades, “It didn’t meet our expectations and was not finishing the work in a timely manner so we terminated that contract and went to the second bidder.” Unfortunately, Mother Nature didn’t cooperate to allow that second contractor enough time to finish the list of projects. Those left over sidewalk projects will be added to whatever work is planned for 2017.
There is something new in the way of crosswalks. The city has applied cold plastic markings for crosswalks along the newly paved stretch of 15th Avenue. It’s a pilot project to see if the cold plastic application will last longer than the painted crosswalk markings.
As for how long the road rehab will last, that’s a different matter. Councillor Brian Skakun wanted to know more about quality control and testing of new pavement. McIntosh says the contractor has in-house testing “We do receive all the results to make sure that they achieve our specifications.” In the case of roads where “seams” are required to join the asphalt lanes, McIntosh says typically hot application is preferred and can be achieved during warm weather “If there is rain in the middle of the process the hot joint will not be achieved. Also to note, it’s preferable to put the joint outside of the wheel path if the joint is on the paint line, it will receive less tire tracking and less wear.”
McIntosh says a new system of grading pavement to judge its lifespan is now in play. He says typically, arterial roads are expected to have a lifespan of 10 to 12 years, Collector roads are expected to last 12 to 17 years, and local residential roads can have a lifespan of up to 25 years. “We’re probably beyond some of our local ( residential) roads, as some of our sub divisions are 40 to 45 years old. Of note, we do have a consultant on board and we are establishing a new paving condition index or measuring system. For 2016, the initial report recommended condition standard has been achieved . We are going to use the B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure pavement condition rating system. Arterial roads have been rated, we’re hoping to do 50% of the locals next year and the remaining 50% in the third year and be on a three year assessment cycle. I think that will give us a better indication of how long treatments are lasting.”