Good quality streets are important to residents and businesses alike. That’s why improving Wilmington’s street infrastructure is a continued priority for City Council. In recent years, the city has developed a data-driven approach to street maintenance, which is producing real results.
While the North Carolina Department of Transportation is responsible for most of the major roadways in the city, the City of Wilmington’s core services include maintaining a large grid of neighborhood streets. The city’s new approach to street maintenance seeks to provide residents with a safe, enjoyable driving experience throughout the entire city. We achieve this by measuring the pavement quality of every city street and using this data to tailor our approach to pavement rehabilitation.
City Council has significantly increased its investment in street rehabilitation, increasing the current budget from $2 million in 2020-21 to $8 million as we enter 2024. These funds made it possible for the city to rehabilitate 177 lane miles of streets during the 2022 and 2023 calendar years. That accounts for over one-fifth of all city-owned streets in a two-year period.
Historically, the primary technique used to rehabilitate our streets is known as “milling and resurfacing,” where old pavement is removed and replaced with a brand-new surface. The enhanced funds provided by City Council have led to a 33% increase in milling and resurfacing over the last two years, with 38 lane miles slated to be completed by the end of 2023. This provides a long-lasting solution for streets in greatest need of serious repair.
The City of Wilmington is dedicated to continuous improvement, which requires a willingness to change the way we’ve done things to deliver better service. That’s why the city is also implementing several newer techniques to elevate the overall quality of our city streets. Public works teams and contractors have begun using pavement preservation, rejuvenation, and overlay treatments to keep streets in healthy condition for longer periods of time. This reduces the cost of deferred road maintenance and results in a better driving experience throughout the city.
Earlier this year, the City of Wilmington adopted four organizational values that inform how we deliver core services: inclusion, collaboration, creativity, and accountability. Our new approach to street rehabilitation and responsible stewardship of street dollars is a prime example of how these values are driving better service delivery and advancing City Council’s priorities and vision for Wilmington’s future.
Find out more: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JBye6-JwrSM
Emma Dill - Dec 4, 2023
Staff Reports - Dec 4, 2023
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