Patches of new pavement have failed throughout the city because they were paved too late last year, City Engineer Chris Wallin said.
But the paving company will redo those areas at no cost to the city, thanks to a one-year warranty negotiated because the paving was done so late in the season.
Work should begin in mid-June.
There are long, narrow strips of failed pavement in the middle of Albany Street,near the Brandywine Avenue intersection; Eastern Avenue near Brandywine; Rugby Road between Waverly Place and Phoenix Avenue; Ashmore Avenue near Central Parkway; and elsewhere.
“There’s about a dozen areas in the city,” Wallin said. “On average they’re about 1 to 2 feet in width by 10 feet in length.”
They are mainly in the middle of the road.
“We believe what caused it was the time of year it was put down,” Wallin said. “We had a cold spell in late October.”
City officials knew last year they were taking a risk when they authorized late fall paving. But the City Council had not approved paving bids until mid-summer. It was fall by the time the new paving process was completed, with the surface pavement melted and oil added to rejuvenate the asphalt.
Then a paving company had to cover that surface with new asphalt.
“The city does not wish to leave that treated surface exposed for the winter. They’re not adequate surfaces for plowing,” Wallin said.
But it was autumn.
“We were up against the wall for time,” he said. “You want to pave above 45 degrees. We were aware of the risks associated with it.”
He thought the paving company could manage it in time. But city officials discussed the matter, and the company agreed it would repave any areas that failed.
Most of the paving turned out fine, but some of the areas paved during the colder days of October now look patchy and cracked.
“It didn’t have a good enough bond with the existing asphalt,” Wallin said.
His goal now is to get bids earlier so paving is done before fall.
He wants to put out bids in April, with work to start May 1. This year, the bids were just recently opened, and the council will award the contracts at the end of May.
That’s better than last year, but not good enough, Wallin said.
“It’s on me. I’ve got to work to get it out sooner,” he said.