Ledger Inquirer

City needs more than $500,000 to repair crumbling Savannah Drive, city official says

Savannah Drive has cracking asphalt and the street is dotted with patches from repaired potholes but Columbus residents must wait until more money is available to get the two-lane street repaved in the Georgian Hills neighborhood.

Public Works agreed to repair broken asphalt in the 4000 block after a resident noted it was even worse than a spot the city repaired earlier on the street. Pat Biegler, director of Public Works, said the street has more than potholes causing problems for motorists.

Located between Primrose Road and Pickering Drive, the road is full of flaws for a third of a mile. With recent rains, there is a steady stream of water running along the curb and much of the roadway has moisture beneath the surface of the asphalt.

Farhad AliFarhani, assistant director of engineering/traffic engineering manager for the Columbus Consolidated Government, said on most streets you can resurface the road with an inch and half of asphalt, but not on Savannah Drive. The terrain, location and underground water impact the base on the roadway and causes the surface to fail.

“You see water running continuously in the gutter,” AliFarhani said. “That’s why moisture is the worst enemy of the pavement. It has to be addressed. We can’t just go in there, clean it and put some asphalt on top of it. You will have the same problem again in a couple of months.”

I agree that no one wants to throw good money at a big problem that may return if the work isn’t done properly.

To repair the entire roadway, the city engineer said it will require drain pipes, some type of drain tiles to capture underground water and direct it toward the gutter. Replacing the soil and moisture control measures would cost more than $500,000 , according to an estimate from a contractor.

“This street is a pretty good size,” he said. “Still, that is a lot involved in the repair that has to happen to it.”

The cost of the work is more than what the city has available, AliFarhani said. “As soon as we have the money and it could be allocated to that, we can go ahead and take care of it. Meanwhile, I have asked Public Works to go and buy us some time until other parameters fall into place.”

If you’ve seen something that needs attention, give me a call at 706-571-8576.