The city of Berkeley is set to repave 11 miles of about 40 streets this summer.
The extensive project is part of an uptick in roadwork that is moving at more than twice the normal rate, according to a statement released by the city last week. The work is funded in large part by Measure M.
The projects, which begin this month and are scheduled to be completed by October, focus on reducing flooding and stormwater runoff by using green building techniques. Pothole repairs and general street repairs were not included in Measure M and are not the focus of this summer’s paving projects, the city said.
Measure M, which was approved by 73% of voters in 2012, provides $30 million for “street repaving/rehabilitation and related green infrastructure” over five years.
The city looks at pavement condition, the type of repair required, road classification (arterial, collector, residential), cost effectiveness and budget constraints when determining how to prioritize municipal street repairs.
According to the city, mailers have already gone out to everyone who lives on a street set for repaving.
Homeowners and businesses on streets marked for construction will also be alerted one to two weeks before work begins and may have to deal with street closures and a lack of parking, the city said. Driveway access may also be restricted during work hours, from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.
The city also warned residents that “Those sensitive to petroleum products should be aware that asphalt will be used in this project. Close your windows and doors. Park outside the construction area to avoid oil spray or other complications. Oil and asphalt used during construction is not easily removed from feet, shoes, floors, and rugs.”
However, the city’s hope is that the short-term inconveniences caused by the work will be balanced by the long-term benefits.
The city said the updated pavement will improve the water quality of the runoff that flows into the San Francisco Bay and local creeks, and reduce flooding during storms. Overall, the projects will strengthen Berkeley’s “resiliency” to storms, the city added.
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Berkeley named one of 33 resilient cities in global network (12.06.13)
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Eden Teller, a junior at Macalester College in Saint Paul, Minnesota, is a Berkeleyside summer intern. She is majoring in media and cultural studies and minoring in geology.