by Dennis Dalman
The condition of all Sartell streets and roads will be scrutinized in a computer in what’s known as the “Pavement Management System.”
At its April 8 meeting, the Sartell City Council decided to invest $45,000 for the system. It works like this: A data program scans the surface of every street, noting cracks, potholes and other signs of deterioration. All the data is entered into the program, which can then rate every street and road or portions of them depending on their conditions, from good to very bad. That way, the city will know which streets or portions of them should receive top priority for repair, which could range from seal-coating to overlays to full reconstruction. The data comprises a “Pavement Condition Index,” which can be used for long-range planning for road repairs.
There are 98 miles of paved roads in Sartell, and 27 miles of bituminous trails.
City Engineer Mike Nielson explained the system to the city council, whose members seemed impressed by the concept.
“I think it’s a wise proposal,” said council member Sarah Jane Nicoll.
Council members Steve Hennes and David Peterson asked Nielson if the system could analyze the effects of heavy truck traffic on roads. That kind of information would be very useful, they said, if the city will someday have to make a decision about limiting truck traffic on city streets. Neilson said the effects of truck traffic could be entered into the data system as well.
The council then voted unanimously to spend money for the system.