GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- After snow comes potholes, and with potholes come many flat tires. Moving into fiscal year 2018, Grand Rapids city officials budgeted a $22 million for their Vital Streets road repair and reconstruction plan; about $3.4 of which will be spent on preventative maintenance including pothole repair.
"It was rainy and it was dark so I didn't notice it," said Renea Atkins, describing to FOX 17 prime conditions to hitting a damaging pothole.
After flattening a tire hitting a string of potholes on Kalamazoo Avenue SE and 32nd Street SE Monday night, Atkins says she pulled into the Meijer gas station where she was in good company: one man waiting on his car to be towed, others using the air pump after driving over the same patch.
“Potholes, as we observe them, as they’re called in, we go fill them," said Eric DeLong, Grand Rapids deputy city manager.
DeLong reminds residents to report city potholes on the Grand Rapids' app: GRcity311, or call 311. Unless potholes are especially problematic he says city officials generally fill potholes in the order they are reported.
Meanwhile, other road reconstruction is underway including on Michigan Street NE beginning near Ionia Avenue NW. DeLong says this reconstruction costs about $1.8 million of the $22 million budget, though does not override pothole repair.
“The concrete surface is badly worn and needs to be replaced," said DeLong. "This is one part of our mix of fixes that we do according to our asset management plan, other parts are rehabilitation and pothole patching."
Since the voter-approved 2014 millage, DeLong also says according to MDOT, the city roads have improved from 37 to 58 percent "good and fair" current conditions.
“We’re on the upswing: to go from 37 percent good and fair to 58 percent good and fair in just three seasons is really remarkable progress," said DeLong. "I really appreciate people who voted for this project to help make it happen.”