Chip seal redo on 12th Street costs Tacoma $56,171

31 August 2010, 9:09 am

Due to worker error and equipment problems, parts of a street resurfacing to a well-traveled central Tacoma arterial last year didn’t take, requiring more repair work last week to a stretch of road the city already had spent nearly $163,000 to upgrade, city officials said.

Total cost of the latest work: $56,171.

"It’s not typical," John Gaddis, Tacoma Streets and Grounds Division manager, said of the problems. "We only saw this (happen) in two areas we did last year."

The new repairs – conducted last week on South 12th Street between Sprague Avenue and South Cedar Street – sought to fix spots and stretches of failing chip seal, a layered rock-and-oil pavement treatment that was laid down last year on the busy thoroughfare.

"We did a chip seal last year, but had some rock loss in certain locations," Gaddis said. "Stretches (of failure) varied from a foot wide to 20 feet long. Some might have been 30 feet long or 80 feet long."

The work done in 2009 was part of a "traffic calming" project that reconfigured traffic lanes and added bicycle lanes, Gaddis said. Costs tallied then included more than $73,000 for prep work and more than $89,000 to apply chip seal.

Rock loss problems occurred in part because crews were using a new kind of heat-sensitive oil, Gaddis said.

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