Eight miles of Echo Lake streets to be resurfaced

Monday, July 25, 2011

Do you live on one of the Echo Lake neighborhood streets marked in purple on the map? If you do, your street will be resurfaced next month, as part of Shoreline's street maintenance program.

Public Works will use a process called "Chip-seal" or "Bituminous Surface Treatment" (BST). Chip-seal has been used in Mountlake Terrace for years, but this is the first time for Shoreline.

Shoreline originally started resurfacing streets with asphalt, which creates a very smooth surface. It is also extremely expensive, and the original project had some difficulties with the asphalt peeling.

BST is very durable and inexpensive compared to asphalt. Jesus Sanchez, Director of Operations in the Public Works department, told Echo Lake residents at a public meeting in May, that one mile of asphalt was about the same cost as eight to ten miles of BST.

Public Works has been working with a consultant who has national expertise in BST. Contractors have been lined up. The City is waiting for hot weather. The BST process they have chosen requires three layers of material, with a curing period of 5-7 days between the second and third coat. The hotter the weather, the faster the new surface will cure.

Residents reminded the staff about the August 2 Night Out Against Crime block parties and staff promised that the work would take place after that date.

In response to questions, Sanchez said that residents would be notified street by street and given about a week's notice of work to be done.

The bed of the truck rises 13 feet.  Trees and other vegetation have to be cleared in advance.
Photo courtesy City of Shoreline.
Residents need to cut back all vegetation on their property which would be in the path of the trucks when the bed is up - typically a height of 13 feet.

Residents need to plan to avoid driving on the new surface until the traffic revision signs are removed.

Public Works wants to know about any imperfections in the streets, so they can be repaired before the new surface goes on. (See article). Public Works staff are surveying the streets but they want to make sure they haven't missed anything.

There is a set of questions and answers on the City street maintenance website.

Some streets in Echo Lake are not being resurfaced now because there is other work planned for them.  Many streets to the east of 5th Ave NE were resurfaced with asphalt under the first resurfacing project.




3 comments:

Tina C.,  July 25, 2011 at 11:14 AM  

Yes, MLT has used for years and every time, there is loose gravel to chip your cars and loose "tar" to get thrown on the undersides and around the wheel wells. I guess we should be glad Shoreline can still DO road maintenance, but wish this wasn't the method.

DKH July 26, 2011 at 10:13 AM  

I sent your comment to Jesus Sanchez and asked for his feedback. He said:

"I understand this person’s frustration regarding the chip seal process. The City has taken serious concern with regards to loose chips and tar. In the specifications requirements section of the contract, the City has asked for a much higher standard of street sweeping (more sweeping rotations) right after the application process, in order to minimize rock and chip impacts. Additionally, the City has also placed the responsibility on the contractor to have in place a program for tar removal, at the contractor’s expense for any vehicle stained by tar.

"The City’s goal is to make the BST program as successful as possible both in taking care of the road maintenance and, at the same time, taking care of the City’s residents who pay for the road maintenance through their taxes."

Anonymous,  August 13, 2011 at 3:33 PM  

This is really a second class way to maintain Shoreline neighborhood streets. Now our streets look like rural country roads, not the clean neighborhood roads we've enjoyed in the Echo Lake neighborhood for years. Sure it cheap, but at the cost of dangerous loose gravel (very hazardous to motorcycles & bikes), windshield chips & cracks, tar stains, and increased road noise due the rough aggregate road surface. Given a choice, asphalt resurfacing would be my preference, even with the higher cost, it's worth it in the long run.

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