First pothole blitz of 2019 scheduled for this weekend after driver complaints
Chris Fox and Rachael D'Amore, CTV News Toronto
Published Friday, February 22, 2019 8:01AM EST
Last Updated Friday, February 22, 2019 12:49PM EST
The city will conduct its first pothole blitz of 2019 this weekend, following a number of recent freeze-thaw cycles that have led to an increased deterioration of Toronto’s main roads.
The city typically has about 25 crews out filling potholes on any given day during the winter months but on Saturday, there will be 50 crews working up to a 12-hour day.
“You should notice a considerable difference in the state of the roadways after we complete this blitz tomorrow, ” said Mark Mills, the city’s superintendent of road operations, at a brief news conference Friday morning.
While the repairs will predominately focus on main arterial roadways, such as the Don Valley Parkway and the Gardiner Expressway, the city is relying on residents to report other potholes in less high-traffic areas.
The work will start as early as 4 a.m. and is expected to be complete by about 6 p.m.
“We ask motorists to please recognize our crews out there. Give them the time and space necessary so we can fill these potholes and get these roads in a state of good repair,” Mills said.
Mills explained the blitz will be the first of several that will be scheduled between now and April.
Typically, the city fills more than 200,000 potholes in one year. Up to 4,000 potholes can be filled in a single day blitz.
However, so far this year, Mill said the city hasn’t filled as many as past years.
The city has filled about 13,000 potholes so far in 2019 but that number is expected to rise significantly in the coming days and weeks, as the fluctuating weather has provided the “perfect recipe for potholes,” Mills said.
“We haven’t seen as many freeze-thaw (cycles),” he said.
“At this time last year, we had three pothole blitzes. This is our first, so we may see similar numbers by the end of the season.”
The $182 million road repair budget for 2019 includes between $4 million and $5 million to repair potholes. Each pothole costs about $25 to repair, according to the city.
“Potholes are not only a nuisance for motorists and cyclists but they can also be dangerous. This weekend will be the first of several blitzes to come,” Mayor John Tory said in a press release.
“Our crews will put in long hours, starting very early Saturday morning, to improve our roads and help residents and visitors stay safe and avoid the hassles of a damaged vehicle or bicycle.”
The city does not expect to close any roads while the work is done but in some cases lanes may be closed to allow crews to work on the roadways safely.
Mills noted that lanes being worked on will be clearly marked for drivers.