New Haven’s pothole problems continue

Aaron Berkowitz – News Reporter 

Warm weather is the answer to New Haven’s pothole problems, according to the Mayor’s Director of Communications, Laurence Grotheer.

He said he is not familiar with the specific scheduling of street repairs to designated area around Southern’s campus, but the city’s Public Works department has been using “cold patches” as temporary solutions.

“Public Works is still waiting for the weather to change,” said Grotheer. “50 degrees is generally the threshold needed in order to make more permanent repairs to the street. The material used for the repairs requires that minimum of 50 degrees in order for it to cure correctly. We haven’t had too many 50 degree days and certainly no nights where its remained that temperature.”

Grotheer said the city is asking residents, business owners, and others who are using the city streets to continue to be patient as they are trying to handle the issue. He also suggested anyone who sees a pothole that could potentially damage someone’s vehicle, to report it using the free mobile app, SeeClickFix. The app aims to make Public Works aware of the issues location.

Students that drive down Farnham Avenue, Pine Rock Avenue, and Blake Street at slow speeds weaving through potholes have been complaining about the street conditions for months and are still unsatisfied with the efforts made towards fixing the issue.

potholes-2Jenese Morgan, senior sociology major, said she lives in North Campus Midrise and has to weave her way around these potholes everyday.

“In order for me not to damage my tires or car I have to drive on the opposite side of the road which can sometimes be problematic if there’s traffic,” said Morgan. “I have seen no progress made with this issue and my friend has even caught a flat tire driving there.

Another problem with these potholes is that they don’t only affect those driving on Pine Rock.

“I have been splashed going to class several times walking to class and a few shoes of mine have been ruined too from the ‘mini ponds’ that form on the sidewalk,” said Morgan.

Robert Sheeley, associate vice president for Capital Budgeting & Facilities Operations, said Hamden’s half of Pine Rock Avenue was paved before New Haven’s half solely because their town has their own Public Works department with separate priorities and processes.

Sheeley said the rain and moisture has played another big role in the “cool patches” not working as well as they can.

“There’s more than paving that has to be done. The street also has to do with the storm sewers. If the road isn’t properly pitched the water that collects on the street won’t make it to them so it floods over and forms those huge puddles,” said Sheeley. “New Haven streets are a wreck right now so I would say our streets wouldn’t be a top priority for them to fill Public Works said they will be repaving Farnham avenue during the summer which could make us become even less of a priority.

Grotheer said anyone who has suffered damages to their vehicle can file a claim with the city. The process they have in place will help determine whether or not a person will be reimbursed for the damages or not.

Photo and Video Credit: Derek Torrellas


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