ALACHUA – Motorists driving through Alachua in the coming months will undoubtedly experience road construction in various spots throughout the city.

City of Alachua transportation infrastructure was the subject of discussion at a recent city commission meeting.  The commission authorized $247,000 in the City’s FY 2011-12 budget for street resurfacing of an asphalt overlay of existing roadways.  These funds will pay for $50,000 for resurfacing 1,000 lineal feet of streets within the city’s Community Redevelopment Area (CRA), $152,000 for resurfacing 3,000 lineal feet of streets outside the CRA and $45,000 for chip-sealing unpaved roads in Alachua.

Resurfacing a road involves putting an asphalt overlay on top of an existing roadway and comes at an average cost of $50 - $55 per foot of roadway. Street segments within the CRA to be resurfaced include 800 feet along NW 148 Place from State Road 235 to NW 142 Terrace or 875 feet along NW 145 Avenue from NW 142 Terrace to NW 145 Terrace.

Street segments outside the CRA to be resurfaced are 300 feet along NW 125 Street from NW 147 Lane to US Highway 441, 1,300 feet along NW 141 Street from NW 154 Avenue to NW 158 Avenue; 500 feet along NW 147 Avenue from NW 135 Terrace to NW 137 Terrace; 700 feet along NW 135 Terrace from US Highway 441 to NW 147 Avenue; and 450 feet along NW 137 Terrace from NW 147 Avenue to NW 146 Avenue.

Chip-sealing refers to covering unpaved roads with a gravel-type asphalt mix and costs significantly less than asphalt paving.  With chip seals, a thin film of heated asphalt liquid is sprayed on the road surface, followed by the placement of small chips, which are then compacted onto the asphalt, and excess stone is swept from the surface.

The cost for chip-sealing is significantly less than for asphalt paving at a cost of $85,000 per mile of chip sealing versus $300,000 or more per mile for asphalt paving.

The City of Alachua maintains six miles of unpaved roads. This year’s funding level will enable the City to chip-seal approximately 2,800 feet of unpaved road. Roads selected for the chip-sealing process are NW 150 Avenue from Burnetts Lake Road to NW 128 Street.