Violet Township has completed its 2014 paving program with money to spare.
With the township's annual paving budget set at $500,000 this year, Shelly and Sands Construction Co. recently completed the paving of about five miles of township roadways using conventional hot-mix asphalt methods.
Given that 2013 prices for conventional hot-mix asphalt were in excess of $100,000 per road mile, township officials expected to spend the entire budget for 2014 for those five miles.
However, Violet Township Engineer Greg Butcher said the cost of the project came in at $379,000.
"We were pleasantly surprised by the competitiveness of the bids we received. We credit it to the time of year and the scope of work we put into our bidding documents," Butcher told the Violet Township board of trustees on July 16.
Shelly and Sands recently paved a large stretch of Busey Road between Diley and Pickerington roads and repaved streets in two township subdivisions.
Butcher said a small part of the Busey Road phase of the project also included the paving of an apron to improve the entrance to Busey Road Park.
Butcher said the scope of work covered the New England Acres and Sturbridge Meadows subdivisions, two areas targeted for repaving after residents in those areas voiced opposition last fall to their streets being treated with chip-seal paving methods.
The chip-seal method involves resurfacing roads with an asphalt emulsion topped with limestones. While much cheaper and thus attractive to budget-strapped local governments, it is considered significantly rougher in texture than conventional hot-mix asphalt.
After property owners in those two adjoining neighborhoods demanded remediation of the chip-seal work, the Violet Township board of trustees voted unanimously to repave each subdivision's streets in October using conventional methods.
With the work completed in mid-July, the focus now is on other township roads that need preventive maintenance, a feat made possible with the extra $120,000 in the township's paving budget.
"I think we're going to do some crack sealing. That's been a good technology for us. We can treat a few more streets and head off those pavement maintenance issues," he said.
Crack sealing involves filling distressed areas of a road surface with hot liquid asphalt, significantly reducing moisture from getting into the subsurface layers of the roadway.
Butcher said the township has no plans to implement the chip-seal paving method on any of its roads this year.