Columbia River Revelstoke MLA Doug Clovechok says he is hearing from Wasa residents about the recent seal-coating of roads in that community.
He has written a letter to Wasa residents to keep them up to date on what he has found.
“It is my duty to follow up on your concerns and to investigate
the issue when deemed appropriate. In response to the concerns, I reached out to the Ministry of Transportation (MOTI) and while we had a few conversations via phone, it was clear to me that I needed
to see the roads first hand. On July 5th, 2019 I invited MOTI and RDEK Director Jane Walter to Wasa so that we could view the roads, and I could walk the roads myself.
“In response to my request for more information about the seal-coating process, MOTI has provided the following two resources.
The first link is from the MOTI website, explaining why seal-coating/chip sealing is an effective treatment.
The second video is from the USA, explaining the process and benefits of sealcoating.
I understand the roads feel and sound different right now, however I have been informed by MOTI, that the majority of roads in Wasa were seal-coated (10+ years ago), and this procedure was needed again to
keep the roads from deteriorating. The oil in seal-coating fills the cracks in the road, this stops water from seeping down and eroding the road. This is why you will see water pooling at certain intersections, the
seal-coating is actually working. During our tour, MOTI made note of the ‘pooling’ spots and they will look into additional drainage.
“Once the oil is applied, a layer of gravel is placed on top and compressed into the oil. The gravel used is fresh new gravel, which means it will be rough and loud on the roads, but over time the gravel will become smoother, and by next year it will become much more compacted into the road. Warm, dry weather assists with this process, and we all know how little of that we had this June and July.
“The top layer of gravel is then swept and any loose gravel will get pushed to the side of the road; I’ll be honest, there isn’t much MOTI can do about that. However, MOTI’s District Manager toured the roads
prior to my July 5th visit and he informed the road contractor that they were to go back and clean up the gravel that sprayed onto resident’s front lawns. Keep in mind that if gravel is on the MOTI right-of-way,
it is allowed to stay there; you can remove it if you wish.
Maintaining our roads is costly, but important work. The roadwork in Wasa was a $600,000 road improvement project. This project equated to 15% of the summer budget for this area of the Province
(Area is: Elk Valley to Creston to Radium). The seal-coating project for Wasa is now complete.
“It will stay in its current state until MOTI deems that it is due for more improvements.
“I have been working closely with MOTI and they have assured me that in the future, they will work with the maintenance contractor, making a concerted effort to improve communication before undertaking road improvements of this scale. I hope that this provides some additional clarity and I will continue to advocate for improvements as they are needed.”
Doug Clovechok MLA