You asked: What’s going on with Portsmouth Boulevard?

Published 9:01 pm Saturday, August 24, 2013

You asked: What is the nature of the work being done to Portsmouth Boulevard? Why is a section of the road being resurfaced, and what is the scope of the project?

T.H., Suffolk


New asphalt has been laid on 5.12 lane-miles of Portsmouth Boulevard, between the Route 58 ramp and the Nansemond Parkway-East Washington Street intersection, said L. J. Hansen, the city’s assist director of public works.

The work started on Aug. 8 and was due to finish Thursday, but a contractor is waiting for better weather to do the pavement marking, he said.

The “5.12 lane-miles” doesn’t mean the project is 5.12 miles long. That figure includes each 12-foot-wide lane the asphalt has been laid on, including turning lanes.

“I would say it’s more like 1-1/2 miles” in actual length, Hansen said.

The new asphalt was laid after the old stuff was milled down to a depth of two inches, he said.

New asphalt to the same depth was then laid, he said, making it a smooth surface.

“This is part of our routine maintenance, not a special project,” Hansen said, adding funding of $638,060 came from the Virginia Department of Transportation.

Two contractors were involved, he said: Blair Brothers did the asphalt, and ANG Enterprises will do the pavement marking.

“Obviously, a resurfaced road is going to be a smoother road,” Hansen said. “If you don’t maintain it, water gets underneath and causes big problems.

Pavement marking requires very specific weather, he said, and conditions of late have been too wet.

“We’ve had a very wet year – we’ve had some real trouble with pavement markings,” he said.


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