Sterling Heights fills in details on Saal epoxy roadwork

By: Eric Czarnik | Sterling Heights Sentry | Published June 1, 2018

STERLING HEIGHTS — A joint repair project to fix Saal Road using a special epoxy technology has by no means fallen through the cracks, according to Sterling Heights officials.

Officials said that the Mount Clemens-based contractor Performance Roads LLC was put in charge of handling the joint and pavement work, which has been taking place since May 21 on Saal Road, between Cornell and Alpena drives, which is about a third of a mile.

The Sterling Heights City Council originally approved the contract in its May 1 consent agenda. The contract’s project cost was listed at $49,500, and the agenda item allocated $53,500 for the job via a budget amendment.

City Engineer Brent Bashaw explained that Saal Road needed the work due to the cold and often fickle weather that took place over the winter, which caused freeze-thaw damage. He said the work crew is continuing to work on Saal after Memorial Day, though the completion date has yet to be determined due to weather issues.

As part of the job, road crews were assigned the tasks of getting rid of existing cold patch, filling cracks with a special epoxy mix and troweling it by hand, city officials said.

In a May 1 City Council meeting presentation, City Manager Mark Vanderpool listed some of the advantages behind the epoxy filler, including that it’s cheaper, easier and faster to apply. The material also doesn’t crumble like asphalt, is around five times more durable than concrete, and resists salt, oil and water better, Vanderpool said.

According to city officials, other roads could employ the same epoxy technology in the future. Bashaw said city officials have been monitoring the product for a few years. They saw a demonstration of it a couple of years ago, and they looked over areas where it had been used.

Bashaw believes that the epoxy treatment will “hold up well,” but he doesn’t have a list of where else the epoxy method could be used within Sterling Heights.

“We’ll really have to find the best application for it,” Bashaw said. “We don’t have a certain area that we’re looking to go to. We’ll have to find the type of pavement with the failures that it would work best in.”

City officials said that nearly $144 million has been invested in road repairs since 2013, with the voter-approved Safe Streets Millage funding some of the local street repairs. The city expects $100 million or so in repairs to take place over a five-year span.

In a statement, Mayor Michael Taylor thanked the public for being patient with ongoing road construction.

“Needless to say, this will be one of the busiest road construction seasons in Sterling Heights’ recent history,” he said.

Find out more about Sterling Heights road construction by visiting the Cone Zone page at www.sterling-heights.net or by calling (586) 446-2489.