It’s not often that public works asks a contractor for a change order. But when he saw how well his first roller-compacted concrete (RCC) pavement project went, asking the city council to spend $150,000 now to save millions on future maintenance was a no-brainer for former San Angelo, Texas, City Engineer Clinton Bailey.
His gamble apparently paid off. The following year the city council tripled public works’ budget to $1.68 million. Although it was a drop in the bucket compared to the estimated $150 million needed to fully rebuild 30% of the city’s streets and roads, it was still enough to kick-start maintenance that had been postponed during the Great Recession.
“RCC makes sense financially,” Bailey said in an interview on the city’s in-house news program. He’s now public works director for the City of Fredericksburg, Texas. “We won’t see the potholes and cracks that need sealing; these roads will never need a sealcoat. We can take the streets we’re rebuilding with RCC off our maintenance schedule and allocate those dollars elsewhere.”
Since those two 2011 projects, the Texas DOT developed a special specification and is overseeing its first RCC project, a safety rest area (the alternative was continuously reinforced concrete pavement).
When Jerry Morales became the City of Midland’s first Hispanic mayor in late 2013, one of his top priorities was finishing a road rebuild that business owners had long grown weary of. Almost two miles of a cracked, pitted, and potholed four-lane asphalt arterial required complete reconstruction. While that’s the ideal opportunity to fix and install other public works assets like water and wastewater mains, manholes, sidewalks, and traffic lights, all that work takes time.
By the time the final paving phase rolled around almost three years later, Morales wanted Lamesa Road open to traffic ASAP. Reece Albert Inc., the same RCC contractor San Angelo used, completed the job in two phases between May and June 2014. Each phase lasted about a week and the pavement was carrying traffic 48 hours after placement.
Source: Public Works Magazine (www.pwmag.com)