Our 1,300 miles of roads need continuous maintenance. Weather, heavy traffic and utility work cause damage. Preventative road maintenance saves tax dollars. It costs less to repair roads than to rebuild them.
We regularly inspect our pavement to decide when maintenance is needed. Our Annual Road Maintenance Program lists all our maintenance work for the current fiscal year. Work includes:
- Asphalt overlay (paving): We put a new layer of asphalt on the roadway.
- Crack sealing: We fill small cracks on pavement. This stops water from damaging the road base. It extends the life of the road three to five years.
- Pavement patching: We treat deteriorated pavement by placing hot mix asphalt concrete and compacting it. The repair lasts five to 10 years.
- Pothole repair: We fill in potholes.
- Pavement marking: We replace yellow and white traffic stripes and other faded traffic markings.
- Sweeping: We remove debris from the road and bike lanes.
To request road maintenance call 503-846-7623 or submit a Service Request.
Slurry seal treatments protect pavement from damage and seal small cracks in the road. We slurry seal certain roads every seven to 10 years while they are still in good condition. Using slurry seal means we only need to repave every 20 to 30 years.
Slurry seal is applied as a liquid, and it takes several hours to solidify.
Slurry seal treatment process
If your road is getting a slurry seal treatment, we send you a postcard about 60 days ahead of time. We ask you to cut vegetation near the road. About three weeks before, our crews clean the street, seal cracks and do other minor work.
You get another postcard about two weeks out. Two days ahead of the treatment, we put out no-parking signs. Contractors also give out paper notices. All vehicles need to be off the road by 7 a.m. on the day of the treatment to avoid being towed.
We select contractors to do the work through a competitive bidding process.
Don’t park, drive, walk or bike on the road until it is dry. Slurry seal is sticky and hard to clean up. Make sure children and pets stay off the road until it is open.
It’s normal for the color of the street to get darker in the days afterward. Cars driving over the slurry seal will help smooth the surface. Some rocks may loosen, and you may see minor defects. Crews will inspect the road and sweep loose rock a few weeks later.
Chip seal makes aging pavement last longer. It is a cost-effective treatment that seals small cracks in the road. It also helps prevent skidding. Chips are small pieces of crushed rock.
Crews begin the process by sweeping the road. Then they spray liquid asphalt. A chip spreader lays down chips on top. The chips are then pushed down by a roller and swept to remove loose chips.
You can drive on the road soon after the treatment. Driving over the surface can help smooth it and push the chips down further