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Offered by: City of Brighton Communications Office

With summer in full-swing, drivers in Brighton are feeling the effects of the City’s Public Works crews street repairs from the colder months. The prime time for the repairs is October to March when roadways contract to open the cracks for crews to seal. But why is sealing cracks the solution compared to repaving streets? For the answer, we turned to the City of Brighton’s Public Works Engineer Manager Christopher Montoya.

Crack sealing is a method used to seal cracks in the road to prevent water intrusion, reduce impacts to the subgrade, and to preserve the roadway.

“Crack sealing is one of the most cost-effective preservation methods used by entities,” Montoya said. “Paving is another total operation and is not necessarily a comparable effort. On the contrary, repaving a roadway often can remove some of the cracks during the process, but is approximately 20-times more expensive, as a generic comparison because it highly depends on the roadway segment and overall condition.”

Montoya said the City pays approximately $2,500 per ton of material, which includes all inherent costs. This covers use of a crew, traffic control devices, a crack seal machine, and the crack seal material, itself.

The City of Brighton has conducted a city-wide pavement inspection to classify the condition of each roadway within city limits. The City has also compiled a 10-year plan for areas that require maintenance and prepared treatments for each of those areas. Typically, newer roadways, pavements in generally good condition, and even some roadways that need additional maintenance may receive crack seal to preserve the roadway even in the current condition.

“Since the budget does drive the ability to perform major roadway and other infrastructure maintenance, we find preserving the roadway from water penetration is a better solution than no maintenance,” Montoya said.