Understanding Pavement Management Made Easy by the City of Santa Paula

Santa Paula, CA – The City of Santa Paula is excited to unveil the release of two educational videos on pavement management for its residents. The first video, Pavement Management 101, provides insight into the complex process and considerations for managing Santa Paula’s streets and roads, while the second video, 2020-2025 Pavement Management Plan, overviews the plans and projects planned over the next 5 years.

“Local streets and roads are the connective tissue of our communities, providing the pathways – literally and figuratively – for both economic and personal activities,” said Tai Chau, Santa Paula City Engineer. “And street maintenance and pavement preservation are vital activities that ultimately help extend the life of our local streets and roads.”

According to the National Association of City Transportation Officials, streets typically make up more than 80 percent of all public spaces, which is why it is so critical for residents to gain a better understanding of what goes into the process. Delaying or not prioritizing street maintenance results in more intensive reconstruction projects, which are more time consuming and substantially more expensive. Bottomline, the more done upfront to maintain Santa Paula’s streets, the more that is saved in the long run which allows even more streets to be addressed.

In addition to recently completed and in-progress projects, the Santa Paula Public Works team put together a five-year Pavement Management Plan (2020-2025) to help address additional needed improvements throughout the Santa Paula community. In total, this plan will include 15 miles of road maintenance, nine miles of preservation and light rehab, and 1.5 miles of heavy rehab or construction.

During the first year, which is slated to begin work July 1, 2020, street maintenance throughout the city will be the main focus; however, heavy construction is also planned for the Peck Road and Faulkner Road pavement rehab project. In the remaining four years, a plethora of additional street maintenance and repair work will be completed. Highlights of such work include slurry seal and 2-inch grind and overlay work on Harvard Boulevard, and improvements to residential streets like La Vuelta and Terracina Drive, as well as to collector roads like Main Street and Santa Barbara Street. Throughout this five-year process a variety of sewer and water utility work will also take place to leverage efficiencies in construction, such as combining efforts with the Crosstown Water Main Pipeline project.

While Santa Paula’s streets will be greatly improved after this plan is implemented, it’s important to note that street maintenance and repair is a continuous process. Santa Paula residents are highly encouraged to check out the City’s new educational videos for more details on the five-year plan and on general pavement management best practices. In the meantime, the Santa Paula Public Works team will be hard at work planning for ongoing maintenance projects to help keep the Santa Paula community moving.

Contact: Tai Chau, Assistant Public Works Director

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Educational materials such as videos and brochures for distribution to the community are good traditional approaches. Good job, Santa Paula, in putting the video together. Though, most community members would just look at these materials and just ask the bottom line and important question, “That’s nice and all, but when is my street going to be paved?!” Every public works agency seems to struggle with this simple question when trying to address the community member especially in a face to face conversation. Moreover, most community members are not going to read a technical pavement management system (PMS) report.

One successful approach to better address the question and provide more transparency is translating that technical PMS report into a user-friendly, graphical interface web application system based on a geographic information system platform. Basically, this system would show each street’s pavement condition index, last pavement treatment, future or proposed treatment, estimated schedule, and any linked document such as a city council staff report. All a user (i.e. community member) does is click on a street and a window pops up with this information. This system needs to be periodically updated, and should be done concurrently with the PMS at the latest. Anyway, good luck Santa Paula!