Streets And Alleys
The street department has more than 50 miles of concrete and blacktop streets to maintain. Keeping up with street repair has become more of a challenge each year. For example; in 1999 the City used 800 ton of asphalt to make adequate repairs on streets. In 2007 the City used 1500 ton of asphalt.
The Street Department spends more time on street repair than any other area. Asphalt street repair involves setting up traffic control to provide safety for the workers. The old asphalt is milled off and removed. Poor sub-base is removed and replaced if necessary. New asphalt is paved back over the area. Concrete street repair also involves setting up traffic control. The old concrete is broken up and hauled away. Poor sub-grade is removed and replaced and new concrete is poured back in place.
Other street maintenance includes replacement of bad curb, grading and shaping gravel alleys and filling potholes.
Street sweeping takes place in the spring, summer and fall. Weather permitting the City may start as early as February to pick up as much sand as possible before it enters the storm sewer. We try to keep the sweeper going every day. Sand, dirt and debris cut down the capacity of the storm sewer causing backup and street flooding during heavy rains. During the fall, leaf sweeping requires trucks to haul out leaves. Sweeping goes as late as possible into November.
An active sweeping program is required per our MPCA storm water permit.
Traffic Signs, Signals and Road Markings:
Sign and post replacement is an ongoing program throughout the year. There are approximately 1900 signs in the City. Signs that are worn or damaged are replaced according to the Minnesota Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices.
We have traffic signal lights at five intersections in the City. Staff replace bulbs, as needed, throughout the year.
The City use 250 gallons of traffic paint each year. In the spring and summer the staff repaints 110 crosswalks, 450 parking stalls on streets and parking lots, yellow curb, trail markings, railroad crossings and turn lane arrows. Some of this work requires traffic control and some is done at night when there is less traffic.