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City accepts 'praise' for repaving process

So whose brilliant idea was it to repave East Barnett Road — paving over all the manholes and utility access points in the process?  Then they cut holes in the brand new pavement to bring all of the manholes up to the new road surface level.  Why not raise the manholes first and avoid having to cut up the new pavement? — Dave R.

Dave, while some may doubt your sincerity in describing the idea as "brilliant," the folks at Medford Public Works are more than happy to accept the accolades, and to explain why what they did is the best approach.

Corey Crebbin, the head honcho at the department, laid it out for us and you as follows:

"The asphalt on East Barnett had to be lowered using a grinder prior to paving in order to keep the slopes for drainage and pedestrians crossing intersections reasonable," Crebbin wrote in an email. "The utilities in the pavement had to be lowered in order to not tear up the manhole rings and the asphalt grinder. If the utilities would have been raised prior to the asphalt overlay there would have been 2 undesirable consequences:

  • The asphalt adjacent to the utilities would not be compacted as well, creating the potential for premature cracking and potholes.
  • The new asphalt would not match the level of the utility lids as closely, resulting in a bumpier ride.

 So, Crebbin concluded, "Public Works takes full credit for this brilliant idea, which results in a better ride and lower long-term costs for our valued customers."

And the department thanks you, Dave, for giving them the opportunity to explain.

Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.