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Posted on: July 23, 2021

Chip sealing city streets resumes after pause for pandemic, weather

City of Boerne street crew conducts chip seal road repairs

After multiple delays, the city’s road repair and maintenance program resumed in July.

Commonly known as chip sealing, the city reduced the program last year during the pandemic as a cost saving measure and because the work requires nearly a dozen people from the streets department to work near each other – making social distancing nearly impossible.

Just as the program was to kick off in late spring, the weather pattern changed and brought multiple rounds of heavy rain in May and June, delaying commencement.

“We are trying a new type of chip seal this year on a couple of streets,” Development Services Director Jeff Carroll said. “The rocks are smaller than what we have used in the past and allows for a smoother and quieter driving surface and reduces the risk of a rock chipping a windshield or vehicle’s paint.”

The city maintains approximately 60 miles of roadway and this summer will seal approximately five miles of street between July and September, targeting more than a dozen roads.

Drivers can travel on roads that have been chip sealed immediately, but it is important to drive slowly and attempt to avoid braking sharply within the first few hours. This time allows the chips to better adhere to the oil. Within a few days of the application process, the city will deploy a street sweeper to the area and pick up some of the loose rock.

Not every road qualifies for chip sealing. Last year, the city did an audit of the condition of every road within the city limits and based on those scores selected roads that would be improved using chip seal. By utilizing chip seal, the city can extend the life of the road in the most cost-effective way possible. Chip seals cost much less than asphalt – $1.50 per square yard for chip seal, compared with around $10 per square yard for asphalt.

Benefits and facts about chip sealing:

  • Provides the opportunity to maintain many city roads for a lower cost.
  • Extends the time between asphalt overlays and results in lower costs over the long term.
  • Helps eliminate the need to crack seal. In hot weather, roads with chip seal re-seal cracks by flowing back together.
  • Enhances safety by providing improved skid resistance.
  • Provides an effective moisture barrier for the underlying pavement against water intrusion by sealing cracks in the pavement.
  • Helps prevent deterioration of the asphalt surface from the effects of aging and oxidation due to water and sun.

Roads to be chip sealed by the City of Boerne:

  • Medical Drive
  • Landa Road
  • Bess Street
  • W. Frederick Street
  • W. San Antonio Avenue
  • Trade Avenue
  • Commerce Avenue
  • Topperwein Road (within city limits)
  • Live Oak
  • North Street
  • Creekside
  • Commercial
  • Sharron Drive (within city limits)
  • East Evergreen Street
  • Water Street
  • Francis Avenue
  • Highland Drive
  • Upper Balcones Road
  • Coughran Road
  • Parkway
  • Hill Street

Please note, with weather and material delivery delays it can be difficult to provide an extended period of advanced notice. The Development Services Office will typically let residents know one week in advance by placing flyers on their doors.

City of Boerne street crew release chip seal during road repair

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