Tuesday, March 15, 2016

If And When You Rebuild It

Amherst:  27.7 square miles, 133 miles of roadway

The Select Board, keepers of the public way, received a technical briefing from the Department of Public Works last night and the take away was pretty sobering.  To repair all the roads in town this  year would cost almost $30 million.



But the current plan is to spend only $1.5 million this year and another $2.2 million over the next four years.  Or a total of just under $4 million over five years.  The state will do Belchertown Road (Rt9) to the tune of $1.8 million in 2019.

 Pavement Condition Index (1-100) higher number is better



Thus bringing the total backlog down to "only" $22.5 million or so.  Except of course for the additional repair work that will be generated by normal wear and tear over the next five years.

 Consultant (StreetScan)  used hi tech van with ground penetrating radar, microphones, cameras to scan roads

The Select Board also voted to approve a roundabout for Triangle/East Pleasant Street that will certainly be well over $1 million to construct but DPW Chief Guilford Mooring ducked the question about financing the project.

And it was also pointed out that North Amherst Village Center intersection will simultaneously be fighting for funding as well.


Who would have thought pavement could generate such excitement?
 Did your road make the list?

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank God we don't need any fucking sprinklers.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see Mill Lane on the list. Its current potholes make the road almost impassable.

Larry Kelley said...

As one of the last (mostly) unpaved roads in Amherst, it would have made the list for the past 20 years if the DPW had started such a list 20 years ago.

Anonymous said...

Indian Pipe Lane? Once Amherst College students hear about THAT one, they're going to start a petition to change it.

Anonymous said...

It's all fun and games until someone loses a hubcap.

Anonymous said...

Vocabulary is impressive!

Dr. Ed said...

Am I the only one who notices that half the cost is for police overtime?

Not asphalt, not equipment or guys operating it, but cops drinking coffee.

Anonymous said...

A roundabout at University Drive and Amity Street? College Street and South East Street. Traffic is worse in both those spots.

Anonymous said...

I think it's interesting a good portion of these roads are in Amherst Woods...

Mark Warren said...

We didn't need the double rotary at Atkins (I don't care who paid for it), nor do we need the other two roundabouts. People just love to speND money and "improve" stuff. And while I am being cranky the north section of the common looks fine to me! I won't even mention the new school fiasco. Bring on the mayor so I have someone to complain to.

Anonymous said...

Why do you care, Ed? You don't live here. Get a life.

Anonymous said...

I think it's interesting a good portion of these roads are in Amherst Woods...

That's actually to be expected -- when were those roads all built?
Hint: How many years has it been?

Dr. Ed said...

I'll haunt Amherst until I am returned what was stolen from me.

Anonymous said...

Can someone give me a brief history of Dr ed?

Anonymous said...

Nothing was stolen from you, Ed. You are just an underachiever.

Anonymous said...

Well, great, but did you notice the thing Ed pointed out? He didn't call Amherst a cesspool, didn't say we're going into foreclosure, he pointed out a significant expenditure, and it's actually one, if we really wanted to, we could reduce by a ton. Or is how our tax dollars are being divvied not of a lot of concern to you, but Ed's online activities are?

Are we not going to discuss that line item that Ed brought up, ever, anywhere, because it's too hard to?

Dr. Ed said...

Planet UMess didn't fire two administrators because I am an underachiever.

Anonymous said...

How can we get the traffic light at Amity/ University adjusted?

Traffic stuck on campus while the sparse traffic on Amity has both a turn lane and a never ending green light.

Anonymous said...

Road projects are the perfect way to infuse new energy from a community into the workforce, and there's a lot of money available. We could easily train and pay local community members to do the detail work at an immense savings, and then keep saving because we did job training. The safety training could take place at the middle school where job training and evening education is already occurring. There's a huge pool of qualified applicants in town. More people who live in town could have real jobs with real pay, and they'll be and feel like valued, contributing members of the community.

Another option would be to make the summer and weekend work available to our newest teachers, who make less than 30K, and may be struggling to find affordable housing in the area.

The" brief history" you should be concerned with isn't Ed's, but of how jobs that have traditionally been filled by men get overtime pay, and jobs that have been traditionally filled by women don't. Are we still operating, in Amherst in 2016, on the idea that the men need more money for their time, because they have families to take care of, and women's jobs are just supplements, and a good excuse to get out of the kitchen for a while?

Who is in control of millions in tax dollars Amherst has set aside for work and pay? Do the local unions have more say than you do about who gets paid overtime with your hard-earned tax dollars? Let's get open and honest and real and tackle these economic and class issues, let's not say "Oh Ed" if he brings up any valid topic that isn't how bumpy your drive is, let's create local jobs through our road projects so more people have access to our common pool of cash, and if we can't do it in a "progressive" town like Amherst, then we're doomed.

And KNOW that when some departments say they need more personnel, they are just fortifying their hold on our tax dollars that we use to give them their overtime pay, which most of them plan on getting their hands on long in advance of our even paying it, and then take out of town with them at the end of the work day.

Anonymous said...

APD overtime should definitely be part of the conversation. State law now allows non-police flaggers but as I recall sometimes collective bargaining agreements get in the way of that. Not that I'm against APD overtime, but not for traffic duty.

Scrooge McDuck said...

9:05 asked "Who is in control of millions in tax dollars Amherst has set aside for work and pay?"

That would be Town Meeting. Although the town manager has hiring authority, salaries are in effect approved by Town Meeting in the annual budget or allocations.

Great ideas about job training. Perhaps our invisible Economic Development Director could assist with this? Haven't seen hide nor hair of him.

Anonymous said...

Fifty other states (46 States, 3 Commonwealths, 1 Federal District) all have civilian flaggers and/or state highway flaggers. They have for years.

Only Massachusetts has police officers doing this.

And it's not always safe -- an officer who has already worked the night shift and now is squinting into the morning sunshine isn't always going to have the best perception of distance and vehicle speeds.

*MA, PA, VA, & KY are Commonwealths, the first three because they already were that in 1787, KY because it was portioned off VA, I have no idea why Maine isn't one.
And DC acts like a state, issuing license plates and the rest.

Anonymous said...

Read up on it, McDuck. Town salaries are not set by Town Meeting. Town Meeting approves the budget amount to be appropriated. The Town Manager spends it as s/he wishes and according to agreements with the unions.
This Town Meeting bashing is looking more and more stupid.

Anonymous said...

Where can I get some of this "Common pool of cash"? I've got a couple stained glass windows that need restoration and could sure use a new sprinkler system.

Anonymous said...

CPAC request + politically correct = Rubber stamp.

Scrooge McDuck said...

11:50, if TM doesn't approve the funds the manager is SOL in paying salaries. I stand by my previous statement that TM can get as specific as it wants in setting salaries. Witness a recent failed effort to half-the-staff of the planning department by the esteemed Mr. O'Connor, and a successful one to appropriate $80,000 to hire an economic development.

But thanks so much for the patronizing tone! Your statement certainly reinforces my view that TM is eager to shirk responsibility for its own actions. Among which are appropriating too much for salaries and consultants, and not enough for public works.

Dr. Ed said...

I still say that one needs top look at the two initial figures, the cost to fix the streets and then the cost of police tribute.

As to me being an underachiever, if not murdering people whom most similarly situated people would have killed makes me thus, so be it. I'm also opposed to abortion...