Oakland Co. implements new, more permanent pothole fix

It's pothole season.

The frustrating holes that make your daily drive a massive headache. Places like 13 Mile between Lahser and Telegraph, or 14 Mile between John R. and Dequindre. Officials are fixing them using asphalt mix to fill em in.

But this year, Oakland County crews have a new plan to get the streets back in shape.

"Unfortunately the best material we have sometimes doesn't last because of the temperatures, the water, the moisture, the traffic. It tends to cause the pothole patches pop out," said Craig Bryson of the Oakland County Road Commission.

The goal is to have the fix stay in, and not pop out - so get used to seeing it done differently. Instead of the patch work, you'll hear about spot resurfacing. 

"We take a small area like 500 feet or so to about 1,000 feet, mill out the pavement and put down new pavement.  It's not resurfacing a whole road, it's just patching the very worst areas," Bryson said.

Think of the old way as the bandaid, and this method is more of a surgical strike. It started a few years ago - a facelift for the areas with the potential for wear and tear. Cracks turned into craters, and those potholes created even bigger hazards. Instead of patching them, Oakland County planning to make a mini repave.

"That allows us to go around the county, find the worst sections of road where there are the most potholes and just patch those quickly and easily. We're in and out in a couple of days," Bryson said.

Thirty areas will get the facelift starting this spring. The idea is that this method, which is being used in several metro Detroit communities, works better and lasts longer than just patching a pothole.

"It's relatively inexpensive. It's a good, fast solution that will give us about five years out of that section of road," Bryson said.