Miami-Dade County voters approved the People’s Transportation Plan (PTP) in 2002. An objective of the plan was to fund road improvement projects within municipalities. The City of Miami Gardens incorporated in 2003 and did not receive its share from the PTP proceeds. Revenues from the PTP were first allocated to the City starting in October, 2012. Since our incorporation, funding has been inadequate at the City level for road improvements.
The Public Works Department is working diligently to implement a comprehensive pavement management program that addresses all stages of the useful life of the asphalted roads in the City. Many factors are considered when the department prioritizes these types of projects: How old the road is; the relative smoothness of the surface; the history of potholes that this road has had; the existence of utilities under the road; and numerous other factors.
The city also funded a Roadway Assessment in 2006, and completed projects based on this assessment. This assessment found that many roads need to be milled and resurfaced, while some roads will need preventive maintenance.
Early preventive maintenance is less costly and extends the useful life of pavement. Road resurfacing and/or road reconstruction are usually the last resort. They can cost many times the money compared to the cost of preventive maintenance; especially when considering that the aging of the asphalt begins immediately after it is laid.
Some of the common methods used for pavement preventive maintenance are spray-applied sealers, rejuvenators, micro surfacing, etc. Traditionally these treatments are applied to pavement to reduce pitting and keep road surfaces intact, to reduce shrinkage tendencies, to keep roads watertight so water does not enter the road and create damage, and to rejuvenate the properties of the existing asphalt. Rejuvenators and sealers are designed to penetrate into the existing asphalt and improve its chemical properties. The product the city uses depends on factors such as the age and existing condition of the pavement. For example, a rejuvenator, which is a colorless substance, is applied to asphalt pavement while the road is in good condition. One application alone can extend the useful life of a road several years.
The benefits of a pavement preventive maintenance program are:
• The Program saves the city millions of dollars
• It extends the useful life of the pavement
• It minimizes new roadway construction projects, resulting in less neighborhood disruption
• The maintenance activities helps to maintain a smoother riding surface
• The Program allows for dollars saved to be shifted to new projects
In the near future residents will begin to see pavement preventive maintenance activities being performed throughout the City. Although the roads we maintain may seem to be in good condition, it is important to know that preventive maintenance, as in a vehicle, extends the useful life of our roads and saves our city millions of dollars.