Toledo City Councilors are grappling with the continued movement of the ground beneath Business 20’s pavement just uphill from the JC Thriftway, something that’s been going on for the better part of two years.
Road crews detected the movement via cracks in the pavement that would indicate the hill is slumping slightly to the east. They say it doesn’t seem to be moving very fast. ODOT says there is not much that can be done about it due to groundwater moving through the hillside.
Mayor Ralph Grutzmacher and Councilor Jill Lyon were unhappy that ODOT is now asking for more money so the road surface can be ground up and relaid so there’s not a bump in the road. Mayor Grutzmacher said the council never got the ODOT report on the general condition of the roadway so the council is technically in the dark about what the options are.
A representative from ODOT told the council that the ODOT report was given to the town’s public works director – the report stating that in the 2013-2014 winter there was very little, if any, ground movement. He said ODOT recommends the short stretch of affected pavement be ground-up, and repaved. He said it’s common practice where there is only minor ground movement. Mayor Grutrzmacher added, however, that the residents at the foot of the hill did some re-inforcement work of their own that might have affected the geology at the road level above.
Councilor Jack Dunaway reminded the council that an earlier city council signed an agreement with ODOT to assume maintenance of the road for a lump sum payment. Dunaway told his fellow councilors, “We bought it.” He recommended that the council accept a deal with ODOT that federal funds be used to pay for most of the re-grind and overlay, with the city making up the small difference, and call it good.
The council decided to put off a decision with ODOT until after this week’s city council work session during which they’ll try to gather more information on what the city’s options are. They were told by the ODOT representative that the grind and overlay operation can still happen, but that they’ll need a decision quickly from the council.