Saskatoon sets road resurfacing record
By Andrew Macklin
October 19, 2015 – Municipal officials in Saskatoon announced that the summer road construction season saw $53 million spent maintaining and repairing more roads than ever before. In 2015, the City invested $3 million more than last year, and $20 million more than 2013.
“We have paved approximately 220 lane kilometres of road this construction season, bringing the total over the past two years to 420 lane kilometres, which is roughly the same distance from here to Medicine Hat,” says Jeff Jorgenson, general manager of Transportation and Utilities. “The work completed over the past two seasons has made a noticeable improvement in our roadways, and we hope residents are starting to notice a difference.”
Approximately $26.9 million was invested in road and sidewalk rehabilitation this year. A road preservation treatment or rehabilitation was completed at 160 locations across Saskatoon thanks to the efforts of City crews and contract workers. A number of projects were completed at night, which minimizes traffic impacts.
“With the closure of the University Bridge and more construction zones than ever, we spent a great deal of time planning effective ways of completing work,” says Jorgenson. “Minimizing the impact to the public is a huge priority for us, whether that be the scheduling of projects, completing night work where suitable, developing detour plans to maintain traffic flow, or effectively communicating impacts to residents.”
New in 2015 was the introduction of digital data collection methods designed to improve the efficiency and quality of rehabilitation programs. These included an electronic data collection system used to objectively rate sidewalks, in addition to water and sewer inspections completed with new, state-of-the-art digital imaging technology.
Improvements were also made to the Report-a-Pothole application making it easier for residents to identify and report potholes as well as creating efficiencies for crews to locate and repair them. An estimated 2,845 tonnes of asphalt was used to repair the equivalent of 163,000 potholes, based on an average 12×4 inch hole. 1,565 utility cuts have been permanently repaired.
Approximately 5.4 kilometres of sidewalks were fully replaced, close to 12 kilometres of durable markings applied, and 911 kilometres of lane lines were painted – almost 30 kilometres more than last year.
A curb-to-curb street sweep was completed in 61 residential neighbourhoods, with approximately 1,520 tandem dump truck loads of debris removed in just six weeks. More than 400 kilometres of gravel back lanes were graded or rehabilitated and 24 kilometres of gravel back lanes reconstructed.
A huge success this year was the early completion of the University Bridge rehabilitation project, allowing this iconic piece of infrastructure to continue to serve commuters for many years to come. Significant rehabilitation was also completed on the Highway 11 & 16 Cloverleaf overpasses.
“Despite the significant progress over the past two years, we know there is still a lot of work to do out there,” says Jorgenson. “We intend to continue on this path to dramatically improve the condition of our city’s road network.”