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Grant Rd. pothole project hits $500k speedbump

Road bond work running $40M under budget

The ongoing effort to resurface a three-mile stretch of Grant Road in Midtown will cost about $500,000 more than the initial $1.7 million budget, officials said. The cost bump is due to the composition of the existing roadway forcing a change in repaving methods.

But cheaper bids on other projects mean the city is projected to come in about $40 million ahead on its five-year Road Recovery effort. The City Council has added 45 new stretches of street to the road construction schedule because of the savings.

The city had planned to use a a 150-foot-long "hot-in-place recycling train" to mill Grant between North Santa Rita Avenue and Columbus Boulevard, recycle a portion of the existing asphalt, and top the road with new asphalt.

But part of the existing roadway includes a felt-like mat, called petro mat, at a depth that makes it impossible to recycle some of the asphalt.

That means the project will cost about another $500,000, city spokesman Mike Graham said, "due to the increased milling and paving depths."

Initial core samples taken from the outside lanes did not include any petro mat, which is a roofing-paper-like substrate used in asphalt overlay projects, Graham said Thursday.

When workers began milling, they hit two layers of the mat, stretching across the inside travel lanes and center turn lanes between Santa Rita and Country Club, he said.

"That meant we had to reconsider and go to a more traditional mill and replace method," he said.

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The hot-in-place process is still being used east of County Club, where petro mat is not interfering with the recycling of existing asphalt.

Workers are milling the old asphalt between North Santa Rita (just east of North Park Avenue) and North Campbell avenues Thursday and Friday, with one lane of travel in both directions remaining open during the work. Crews will repave the roadway between 6 a.m. and 4 p.m., Graham said.

May 3-4, crews with Granite Construction Co. will mill and repave the intersections of Grant and North Dodge Boulevard, North Alvernon Way and North Columbus Boulevard, working 7 p.m.-5 a.m. over two nights to minimize traffic disruptions, Graham said Thursday, and update from earlier this week when the work was scheduled to be done next Tuesday and Wednesday.

"The exact start date of the milling and repaving work on Grant Road from Campbell Avenue to Country Club Road has not yet been determined, but the work should begin in mid-May," he said.

The three-mile stretch of Grant between Santa Rita and Columbus had been scheduled to be completed by May 15 when the project was announced last month

The repaving had been budgeted at about $1.7 million, funded by HURF monies (gas taxes and vehicle registration fees), Graham said last month, and will hold up for the eight years it will take for the Grant Road widening project to go through Midtown.

Road Recovery $40 million under budget

This weekend, North Stone Avenue will be repaved Downtown, between Toole Avenue/Franklin and Alameda streets, Graham said.

Also Saturday and Sunday, workers will mill and repave East 22nd Street between Craycroft and Wilmot roads, Graham said. Two lanes of travel will be maintained in each direction, and crews will add another layer of asphalt to 22nd between Swan and Wilmot during the week of May 3, he said.

Those projects are part of the $100-million, five-year street bond program that is running ahead of budget, he said.

Tuesday night, the City Council voted to approve adding 45 major roadways to the road maintenance plan, which was approved by voters in 2012.

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Lower petroleum prices and high original estimates have meant bids for work already completed have been under budget, with a projection of the initial projects totalling $40 million less than budgeted.

$37 million was earmarked for the arterial roadway system, of which about $4.5 million was allocated to pavement preservation and $3 million to rehabbing residential streets.

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Dylan Smith/TucsonSentinel.com

Crews mill Grant Road near North Mountain Avenue on Thursday afternoon.

Streets added

The stretches of roadway added to the Road Recovery list by the City Council:

  • 10th Av (10th Av Project) from 18th St to 19th St
  • 12th Av from 580S 44th St to Santa Paula St (North)
  • 22nd St from Tucson Bl to 250W Alvernon Wy
  • 22nd St from Camino Seco to Houghton Rd
  • 5th St from Country Club Rd to Wilmot Rd
  • 6th Av from Toole Av to Congress St
  • Alameda St from Stone Av to 50W 6th Av
  • Alameda St from 945W Granada Av to Church Av
  • Alvernon Wy from Speedway Bl to 22nd St
  • Calle Polar (Escalante Rd Project) from Nicaragua Dr to Escalante Rd
  • Camp Lowell Dr from 980E Columbus Bl to Swan Rd
  • Church Av (Church Av Project) from 220S Alameda St to Pennington St
  • Church Av (Church Av Project) from 290S Broadway Bl to Cushing St
  • Church Av (Church Av Project) from 100S 6th St to Alameda St
  • Congress St (Silverbell Rd Project) from Silverbell Rd to 250W Grande Av
  • Corona Rd from Tucson Bl to Country Club Rd
  • Country Club Rd from 75S Drexel Rd to Los Reales Rd
  • Country Club Rd (Country Club Rd Project) from Glenn St to 250S Speedway Bl
  • Country Club Rd (Country Club Rd Project) from 2678N Prince Rd to 250N Fort Lowell Rd
  • Country Club Rd (Country Club Rd Project) from 250S Fort Lowell Rd to Glenn St
  • Cushing St from 87E Granada Av to Stone Av
  • Elm St (Pima St Project) from Tucson Bl to Country Club Rd
  • Escalante Rd (Escalante Rd Project) from 156E Pantano Rd to 556E Apache Well Dr (Wingate Bl)
  • Escalante Rd (Escalante Rd Project) from Calle Polar to Kolb Rd
  • Franklin St from Granada Av to Stone Av
  • Granada Av from 195S Saint Marys Rd to Congress St
  • Kolb Rd from 1150S Golf Links Rd to 6820S Irvington Rd (City Limits)
  • Main Av (10th Av Project) from Cushing St to 18th St
  • Midvale Rd from Irvington Rd to Valencia Rd
  • Nicaragua Dr (Escalante Rd Project) from 270E Wilmot Rd to Calle Polar
  • Nogales Hy (Nogales Hy Project) from Irvington Rd to Drexel Rd
  • Nogales Hy (Nogales Hy Project) from Valencia Rd to Los Reales Rd
  • Pennington St from Congress to Stone Av
  • Pima St (Pima St Project) from Country Club Rd to 116E Columbus Bl
  • Plumer Av from Medina Rd to Elvira Rd
  • River Rd from 841W Oracle Rd (City Limits) to Oracle Rd (ADOT ROW)
  • River Rd from Stone Lp (City Limits) to 1st Av
  • Rosemont Bl from Speedway Bl to Winsett St
  • Silverbell Rd (Silverbell Rd Project) from 367S Saint Marys Rd to Congress St
  • Stone Av (Skip/Meet DT Links Project Limits) from 1st St to Broadway Bl
  • Stone Av (Stone Av Project) from Grant Rd to Drachman St
  • Tanque Verde Rd from Kolb Rd to 280W Sabino Canyon Rd
  • Tucson Bl (Tucson Bl Project) from 250S Glenn St to 250S Grant Rd
  • Tucson Bl (Tucson Bl Project) from Fort Lowell Rd to 250N Glenn St
  • Valencia Rd from 12th Av to 1100W Alvernon Wy