City Manager's Blog

Repairing Roads - A Never Ending Process

May 28, 2015

These days potholes are happening by the hundreds.  But the problem with Greeley ‘s roads goes much deeper.  Our roads are in rough shape and this spring’s rainy weather has made them even worse.

Just ask Jerry Pickett, our Streets Superintendent, he’ll tell you he’s planning to have his crews fill between 60,000 and 70,000 potholes this year.  For perspective, take a look at this chart which illustrates the worsening trend.

 

2012

2013

2014

2015
(through April 30th)

Potholes Filled

27,935

54,109

70,088

13,725

Total Cost

$89,900

$135,813

$153,851

$53,784

 

But the pothole problem is just a symptom of the larger road maintenance issue. When you have over 360 miles of streets, (over 1000 lane miles), the responsibility and expense of keeping them in good repair is daunting.  And with it costing a million dollars to repave just one mile of road, the funds to fix all the roads aren’t there.  Without major, ongoing road maintenance those potholes will continue to crop up regardless of how many times they’re filled.

There is a solution:  increase the budget for road maintenance.  But that means finding new, additional revenue.  Otherwise, we’re just taking money from other City services. 

We’ve been fortunate that our recovery from the Great Recession helped add some funding for road maintenance, but that’s a temporary solution.  To look at a more sustainable fix, a citizen committee and the City Council have been looking into the possibilities, including a road maintenance sales tax question for the November ballot.  I’ll use this blog to keep you up to date on those discussions.

Until we get this problem solved, please report all potholes at 970-350-9336 or greeleygov.com/online-reporting.  Public Works will do their very best to get them filled.

Roy H. Otto, City Manager

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Greeley, CO 80631

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