San Diego/ Transportation & Infrastructure
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Published on April 22, 2024
San Diego Rolls Out Innovative Road Repair Techniques Across Neighborhoods to Tackle PotholesSource: City of San Diego

To combat the ever-present issue of potholes and cracked roads, the City of San Diego is bringing new life to its streets with the roll-out of innovative road resurfacing treatments. Targeting a myriad of neighborhoods, from Kensington to North Park, the city's Transportation Department is betting on cape seal and scrub seal methods to stretch the lifespan of its tarmac and provide a smoother ride for its residents.

According to a recent publication by the City of San Diego, these techniques are cost-effective and a staple in preserving the integrity of road surfaces. Bethany Bezak, the Transportation Department Director, touted the new approach in a statement, "While these treatments take a little longer to complete, we know San Diegans will appreciate the results when the roads are in better condition and safer for all users." The long-lasting improvements are part of a strategic effort to slash the City's backlog of street repair.

The process of cape seal involves laying down an asphalt emulsion, followed by crushed rock that needs a three-day curing period before a final slurry seal is applied. The scrub seal technique is similar. However, it uses a sweeping method to push the rock into small cracks, and after that, it is completed with a fog seal. The City promises to vacuum up any loose gravel prior to this curing period, ensuring a neater appearance and safer conditions for vehicular traffic.

During the treatment applications, street closures are inevitable, and residents are given a heads-up with "No Parking" signs placed 72 hours in advance. The inconvenience is a small price to pay for what the city claims will be a more durable and safer driving experience. With an extensive list of streets, from Augustana Place to Waterville Road, the latest projects under Surface Seal Project 2421 and 2422 are on track to wrap up in the coming months, weather permitting.

San Diego's Transportation Department is methodical in choosing which streets receive these upgrades. By employing a Pavement Management System, streets are scored and selected based on their condition and other critical factors like traffic volume and maintenance history. For curious residents, the City offers an interactive StreetsSD map where they can track past, current, and future street repair projects.