By Jon A. Brake
The City of Manhattan has had a history of problems with city streets breaking up. During the late '80 the City went to an all- concrete street which means no wire mesh was put in the pavement.
After disclosure in early 1992 the City started using wire mesh again and continued to tell Commissioners they were using mesh...until the $1.3 million Northview Street Project. (Feb., 14, 2002 Free Press)
The Northview Street Project was contracted to Paver's Inc. of Salina without wire mesh and started breaking before one year.
Paver's Inc. has been awarded the Kimball Ave. project by the Kansas Department of Transportation and again the street will be constructed without wire mesh.
A letter sent to the Commissioners but not released to the public tells of Paver's making repairs (wire mesh is to be provided by the City) and that Kimball will not have mesh. At one point in the letter they refer to the mesh less concrete as: "similar to that seen utilized on parts of I-70." Would this be the same 9" concrete design that was used on U.S. 50 in 1997-98 that is breaking up between Emporia and Newton?
Here is the letter:
TO: Ron R. Fehr, City Manager
FROM: Jerry E. Petty, P.E., Director of Public Works
RE: Northview Streets and Kimball Avenue Project
Iím pleased to report our discussions with Paverís Inc have resulted in an arrangement whereby they will address all of the issues we requested of them in previous written correspondence. They have started the process of removing and replacing the pavement that is cracked and faulted, removing and replacing the sidewalks that have settled, and removing and replacing the crack seal material that has gone bad. They have already satisfactorily addressed the curb inlet problems that we had identified. All of this work is being done at their expense.
Iíll also take this opportunity to address an issue that you and I have discussed related to Kimball Avenue. The pavement design is a standard of KDOT, similar to that seen utilized on parts of I-70. It involves a product called "dowel jointed, plain concrete". What that means in lay terms is that there is no wire mesh in the pavement. The concrete is in excess of 9 inches thick, and is being constructed on a specially designed base.
If you have any questions please let me know.