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Why the worst roads in the Quad Cities aren’t being fixed first

QUAD CITIES, USA-- Earlier this year, we asked viewers where some of the worst roads in the Quad Cities were. And then we went to investigate.

Some of the most pointed out problem areas according to viewers, places like:

  • Interstate 8- between Northwest Boulevard and Interstate 280 exit
  • North Division street north of Interstate 80 in Davenport
  • 25th Street in Rock Island
  • Mercer County roads
  • and the following...
18th Street in Moline

18th Street in Moline

 

Andalusia Rd. near Hwy 67

Andalusia Rd. near Hwy 67

 

8th Avenue and 28th Street in Rock Island

8th Avenue and 28th Street in Rock Island

One of the roads in the worst shape we came across was 12th Street and 24th Avenue in Rock Island. And that's where we met up with long time neighbors Jerry and Kathy.

There hasn't been much to laugh about on this block for decades. But the sure fire sounds of construction trigger different sounds for Jerry Petty and Kathy Zingre.

Read More: A day in the life of a construction workerconstruction

Construction is the sound of relief. It's a day these neighbors doubted would ever come.

"It's been bad for at least 15 years. We had giant sized holes, holes all over," says Zingre.

"It has drainage issues, and the pavement was in terrible shape. So we decided it would be best to tear it all out and replace it," says Rock Island Municipal Services Superintendent Michael Bartels.

In Rock Island, the city is in charge of all concrete, asphalt and brick streets. Leaders say they have to prioritize which roads to fix when.

road-conditions

Road conditions scale

"Basically what we derived out of that was a pavement condition index based off of 0-100," says Bartels.

Let's split that range into three conditions: poor, fair and good roads. The city's main focus is on those roads that fall in the fair section, a rating that's between 41-70.

Public work leaders say it's not that they ignore the bad ones.

"We are still looking at those areas, but it's just a more timely process, budgeting restraints," says Bartels.

But a $1 million budget for 154 miles of roads only goes so far.

"By fixing in that range, you're saving time and you're saving a lot of money; catching it at a time where you can do the patching instead of having to replace everything," says Bartels.

But some citizens think the city should rearrange its priority list, putting the worst roads on top.

"We put up with it for quite a few years. And we pay taxes too, and our road wasn't being taken care of," says Zingre.

"I think the worst needs to be fixed first. Everybody's paying taxes," says Petty.

Petty's streets was one of the worst, but soon when the reconstruction is done it will be something he can finally be proud of.

Most towns in the Quad Cities prioritize roads the same way, focusing on the fair roads first instead of the poorest ones.

Roads only get assessed every few years, so if you notice a problem spot, contact your town's public works department to report it.