Land of 10,000 potholes

Meager city budgets and a rough winter have joined forces and are evident in the form of potholes on roads through out the state.

This week, officials with the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) told legislators to expect a doubling and tripling of major and secondary highways in poor condition over 10 years.

Meanwhile, local governments that do much of the patching say cutbacks in state aid over the years have hampered their summer roadwork to prevent potholes (Star Tribune).

This week’s warm weather revealed some massive potholes. The Northland News Center was on the scene to reveal a hole large enough to lay in. “If we start at this end of the pothole and measure all the way across to really where the pothole ends, this is a monstrous pothole, looks to be about 85 inches from that side to this side,” reported Barbara Reyelts.

In many cases city workers are attentive to the streets in need of repair, but the sort-term solution doesn’t last the remainder of winter. Fox 9 News reports that “Since Jan. 1 in Minneapolis, crews have filled potholes with more than 400,000 pounds of temporary asphalt mix.”

But as Bryan Bjorgaard with the Alexandria Street Department told KSAX, “They go patch it one day, and three days later it’s there again. … It’s just the water, the moisture, the freeze/thaw cycle, the traffic; it’s just one of those things.”

Local governments through out the state are relying on citizens to call in road problems to drive the repair process.

MPR is working with SeeClickFix, an online and mobile reporting tool to connect citizens identified potholes with local government. See that project in action for the Twin Cities over here. Maps for Duluth, Rochester and Mankato are also tracking potholes.

Additional coverage on potholes from Minnesota Today.

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