March: when it can be nearly 80 degrees one day and under 40 degrees the next. And in Arlington, the month marks the start of pothole filling and street repaving season.
There are 1,059 lane miles of roadway in Arlington County, and every March, the Arlington Department of Environmental Services launches its effort to fill in potholes caused by winter freezes and repave about 7-8% of roads.
The 2022 repaving season is kicking off with fewer pothole service requests while DES aims to repave 74 lane miles of road, spokesman Peter Golkin tells ARLnow.
This goal is about on-pace with the number of miles the department has repaved in recent years, according to data from DES.
— Arlington Department of Environmental Services (@ArlingtonDES) March 8, 2022
But first, crews are attending to the potholes. Street repaving will begin later this month.
“March is generally the unofficial start of the pothole filling season as winter storm weather recedes and staff can focus on road conditions rather than storm response,” Golkin said.
So far, county crews have filled 462 potholes, of which 360 were filled in February, he says. Meanwhile, there have been about 254 pothole service requests filed by residents since Jan. 1, according to data from the county.
The number of potholes on local roads has generally declined over the last five years due in part to milder winters, compared to the colder, harsher winters in years past that caused thousands of potholes. The winter of 2019 broke that downward trend with more than 5,100 potholes, however.
“2019 stands out for a 10-inch snow event and about a dozen events total whereas the past couple of years have been much milder,” Golkin said.
This year also saw a few winter storms and extended bouts of freezing temperatures, which precipitated hundreds of water main breaks in Arlington. But the “historically snowy January” gave way to a mild February and — overall — a milder than normal winter for the sixth time in the past seven years, according to the Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang.
But potholes are not just declining because of weather, says the county’s sewers and streets bureau spokesman. Another factor is the county’s stepped-up repaving schedule over the last eight years.
“As the County invests more in paving and the overall street Pavement Condition Index (PCI) increases, the overall number of pothole fill requests trend downward,” Golkin said.
The index increased from a low of 67 out of 100 in 2014 — the result of years of anemic repaving rates — to 80.2 in 2020. Arlington achieved this lift after tripling the number of annual road miles paved.
Now, the county aims to repave 72 to 75 lane miles every year in order to maintain a score between 75 and 80, per the adopted 2021-22 fiscal year budget.
Road users can expect this work to start later this month and to continue through early fall.
“Paving season traditionally runs from the end of March to the end of September, but weather and contractor availability can push things back,” Golkin said. “A segment of planned paving may be shifted to another year for various reasons including nearby new utility work or a construction project nearby that’s fallen behind schedule.”
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St. Charles offers a play-based curriculum in a welcoming, Christ-centered environment.
Our program focuses on socio-emotional development and kindergarten readiness through hands-on and engaging activities. Our programs offer different schedules ranging from 7:30 am-5:30 pm for students, ages 2-5. We feature a full-day Jr. kindergarten class for older 4’s/5’s. Our facility includes a full-sized gymnasium, school chapel, and library. All of our students enjoy music and physical education weekly. Children have an opportunity to participate in enrichment classes such as soccer, basketball, ballet, and science.
We offer Summer Camp with weekly themes and twice a week water play, including Fun Friday moon bounce. Please join us for our Open House Feb. 3 at 9:30 am and 11:00 am. Click here to sign-up.
For more information or to schedule a tour, visit us at www.stcharlesarlington.org or call (703) 527-0608.
If you are a lifelong learner over 50+ who wants to make new friends, power up your brain, and enjoy a wide-variety college-level courses, Encore Learning is for you. An Arlington based nonprofit, Encore Learning offers courses in the arts, theater, literature, history, technology and more. This semester we offer our most popular course, Global Hot Spots as well as 25 new courses. Courses are presented either online or in-person at George Mason University at Virginia Square and other Arlington locations.
Join the free presentation to learn about courses and meet the instructors. This is Encore Learning’s signature event to highlight the upcoming semester with brief presentations by each instructor.
The Spring Course Preview event is Thursday, February 2nd at 9:30 AM via Zoom:
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