July 21, 2017
I’ve had a couple of questions relative to the paving schedule and how the City picks which streets to target each year. Let me work to explain the theory and decision making process in this post.
First and foremost, I encourage each citizen to read the paving presentation that was shared in early 2015. We presented at a City Council meeting early that year, have kept the article live on the website due to its continued relevance.
When we think about street exposure, those blocks coming off of Hancock HIll are the most exposed and attain the most erosion after rain. The more robust downfalls have a greater negative effect on the roads on the Hill. Hence, we targeted seal-coating the area in 2016 and rebuilding one of the key thoroughfares after that.
We also like to consider the streets that gain the heavy amounts of traffic. Fighting Buck Avenue is a gateway to Kokernot Park, the High School, golf course, etc…It handles a lot of traffic daily and needed to be rebuilt. Ave F. adjacent to the SRSU fields is another street that carried quite a bit of traffic and had some considerable drainage issues. Therefore, we had the streets rebuilt last year.
We are working towards revitalizing the downtown area streets and will soon have Jarrett Dirt Works rebuild several of the crossroads in the downtown district. Our businesses, citizens and tourists that traverse the area regularly have routinely communicated that need.
We also opted to get Carpenter Addition seal-coated this year. Hector and I have been wanting to complete that project since 2015 and believe we can extend the life of that set of roads into the foreseeable future.
We are now working towards finishing up some of the main Sul Ross Ave thoroughfare and will then migrate over to the 7th street area to follow behind our Gas Department work. We have also continued to try to resurface the streets around the Murphy Street Downtown area as we see more and more traffic on those streets. We are also hopeful to get finalization on our most recent TxCDBG grant to add more water lines and fire hydrants to the SE quadrant of town. We will have to come behind and seal-coat plus rebuild those areas when complete.
There are lots of positives happening with our projects and much more to complete in the future. The City’s liability for street maintenance is $1.2M a year and we need budgeting to stay the course and continue to implement. My sense is that by the end of 2023 or 2024 paving season, the City streets will have a renewed sense of character and life.
Thanks for your patience and support. As always, feel free to reach out to Hector, J or myself with any questions.
Erik Zimmer, City Manager