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  #1  
Old 07-20-2013, 04:13 AM
drosen drosen is offline
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Default Chipsealing in Washington County

I'm not the most political person, but chipsealing is my trigger. Anyway, Washington County is chipsealing the entire county, apparently. I wrote to the Department of Transportation, voicing my concern over this. I got a reply from a very nice woman, Victoria Saager, who answered my concerns. Not to my satisfaction, mind you, but said she would speak to the road people about using different grade gravel on the road.

She led my to believe that she hears little from bikers about chipsealing. So, if you would like to contact her to let her know how you feel, her email is victoria_saager@co.washington.or.us . She's very polite and does get back to you pretty quickly. Let her know what your views are about the roads as well.

DR
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Old 07-20-2013, 10:00 AM
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Simple Nature Simple Nature is offline
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Thanks Drosen. Email sent.
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Old 07-20-2013, 05:30 PM
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wsbob wsbob is offline
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Doesn't surprise me at all that people riding over chipseal aren't asking about it. I'd be surprised if it's very commonly known what chipseal is.

Not riding extensively out in the county on country roads like I have in past, I'm not aware of what roads are getting chipseal rather than smoother pavement surfaces.

Possibly a bit ironic is the timing, because Washington County is actively moving forward on promoting the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway which with an officially designated route and directional signs, hopes to direct people out for a great time on bikes in the country. If some of the roads on that route are scheduled to get the bumpy road chipseal treatment, that wouldn't exactly be favorable to the success of the scenic bikeway.

Washington County Visitor's Association (they had a booth at today's Beav Saturday Farmer's Mkt) is working with some other parties on the scenic bikeway. Seeing me with the bike, one of the people brought up and gave me the latest on the scenic bikeway (signs should be all up with grand opening in I think, September). If I'd had chipseal on my mind, I would have asked about it.

Last edited by wsbob; 07-21-2013 at 08:43 PM. Reason: correction of scenic bikeway name
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Old 07-20-2013, 06:31 PM
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Chipseal is problematic on its own merits, but when they came up with slurry seal, it really got my attention. A performance standard really needs to be developed for these types of maintenance contracts. Right now, the lowest bid talks, and the bike lanes seem to get the worst of it since equipment can just sluff off on the "edges". Although Hillsboro is aware of the condition, they know that for cars, the surface will smooth out, but in one conversation, it was like a light bulb moment when they realized that bikes don't have that luxury. You send a million bikes down a bike lane and they won't smooth the chipseal or the slurry seal asphalt one iota.
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Old 07-20-2013, 11:02 PM
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wsbob wsbob is offline
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"...but in one conversation, it was like a light bulb moment when they realized..." Simple Nature

Is it the county, or the city of Hillsboro that's using the chipseal/slurry-seal procedure; The OP, Drosen, mentioned the county. You're referring to various un-named people with the city that apparently aren't fully aware of the situation posed by the rough surface result of chipseal/slurry-seal, to use of the road by bike.
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Old 07-21-2013, 07:56 AM
drosen drosen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wsbob View Post
"...but in one conversation, it was like a light bulb moment when they realized..." Simple Nature

Is it the county, or the city of Hillsboro that's using the chipseal/slurry-seal procedure; The OP, Drosen, mentioned the county. You're referring to various un-named people with the city that apparently aren't fully aware of the situation posed by the rough surface result of chipseal/slurry-seal, to use of the road by bike.
It's Washington County that doing the chipsealing. I made the comment about chipsealing on their FB site. I'm sure it was appreciated!
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Old 07-21-2013, 08:01 PM
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Simple Nature Simple Nature is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wsbob View Post
"...but in one conversation, it was like a light bulb moment when they realized..." Simple Nature

Is it the county, or the city of Hillsboro that's using the chipseal/slurry-seal procedure; The OP, Drosen, mentioned the county. You're referring to various un-named people with the city that apparently aren't fully aware of the situation posed by the rough surface result of chipseal/slurry-seal, to use of the road by bike.
Most of the time when I speak to the powers that be, it seems they are both there so they both get an ear full at the same time. There is also ODOT, which owns several of the "hwy" roads but they are rarely at events and certainly are not tuned into local conditions. Washington Co. and Hillsboro both are very much on top of what is really happening on the ground.

Drosen, what is "FB site"?
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Old 07-22-2013, 04:59 AM
canuck canuck is offline
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When you asked about the chip seal did they give any indication of how they determine which roads are to be done?

I've been riding Kerkman Rd 2-3 times a week for the last 10 weeks. It was a beautiful piece of asphalt. Not cracks, no rutting, not potholes, not even a single repair.

And this Saturday I get there and it's been chip sealed, mind you it was really nice 1/4 inch minus aggregate, but a totally uncalled for resurfacing.

I somehow get the feeling that they are on a schedule and rather than spend $50-100 and have someone actually look at a road they just go ahead and waste $1000's on this process because it is time.

It's getting to the point where the ridability of Wash Co has been chip sealed out of existence.
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Old 07-22-2013, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canuck View Post
When you asked about the chip seal did they give any indication of how they determine which roads are to be done?

I've been riding Kerkman Rd 2-3 times a week for the last 10 weeks. It was a beautiful piece of asphalt. Not cracks, no rutting, not potholes, not even a single repair.

And this Saturday I get there and it's been chip sealed, mind you it was really nice 1/4 inch minus aggregate, but a totally uncalled for resurfacing.

I somehow get the feeling that they are on a schedule and rather than spend $50-100 and have someone actually look at a road they just go ahead and waste $1000's on this process because it is time.

It's getting to the point where the ridability of Wash Co has been chip sealed out of existence.

More details: Kerkman's cross-streets...how long a stretch of the road appeared to you to be in a condition not in need of repair...how long ago would you guess had it been since this pavement had been last surfaced...what length of the road was given the chipseal treatment you describe.

I wonder if it's possible this most recent chipseal application for that road may have simply a second phase in a preplanned procedure to build the road up to a certain spec. Just a wild guess...doesn't seem likely, but I'm throwing it out there.
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Old 07-22-2013, 09:11 AM
drosen drosen is offline
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Angry County's rationale for chipsealing

Quote:
Originally Posted by canuck View Post
When you asked about the chip seal did they give any indication of how they determine which roads are to be done?

I've been riding Kerkman Rd 2-3 times a week for the last 10 weeks. It was a beautiful piece of asphalt. Not cracks, no rutting, not potholes, not even a single repair.

And this Saturday I get there and it's been chip sealed, mind you it was really nice 1/4 inch minus aggregate, but a totally uncalled for resurfacing.

I somehow get the feeling that they are on a schedule and rather than spend $50-100 and have someone actually look at a road they just go ahead and waste $1000's on this process because it is time.

It's getting to the point where the ridability of Wash Co has been chip sealed out of existence.
Here's what I got about the rationale for chipsealing vs. asphalting:

"With road maintenance needs outpacing available road maintenance funding, the county is faced with having less resources for roads. Deferred road maintenance on county roads is currently estimated at $10 million and is expected to double over the next 10 years.

Most of our road maintenance resources go toward maintaining pavements. To ensure that our pavement maintenance dollars are being used most effectively, the county hired Applied Pavement Technology, Inc. to conduct an independent assessment of the county's pavement preservation and maintenance program. That study found that the pavement maintenance strategies used in the rural area - primarily chip seals - are cost-effective and should be continued. In fact, they recommended that more seal coat treatments be used in the urban area to stretch our maintenance dollars. You can view the presentation of the study findings and read the executive summary and the full report on our Reports and Publications page.

In a 2009 report reviewing our chip seal program (also posted to the Reports page), it is noted that since 2002 the county has been applying a fog seal as the final layer of our chip seals. The fog seal is a fine mist of emulsified asphalt covered with a fine dusting of sand. The fog seal helps fill voids and ties down the chip seal. We also started using a slightly smaller rock size for our chip seals at that time. This was a result of a recommendation from a bicycling representative on the Rural Roads Operations and Maintenance Advisory Committee (RROMAC). Both the smaller rock and fog seal were efforts to improve road smoothness and ride quality for bicyclists.

We recommend that bicyclists avoid roads during and immediately after chip sealing. Within a few months these roads will again be suitable for riding. Soon they will look as if they had received a much more expensive hot mix asphalt paving. Since most rural roads are chip sealed every 7 to 10 years, these roads are not best for bicycling for just a very short time. You are already familiar with our annual road maintenance plan, where you can view the list of roads scheduled for chip sealing each year. Check out the roads that were chip sealed last year or the year before and see if they are now suitable for riding."

Your luck at Kerkman was better than mine. I had to ride on hard gravel. You're right, there was no need to do anything. Victoria's comment about avoid the new sealed road for a few months is unacceptable. Kerkman and Roy are links to other roads.
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