A study commissioned by the city of Hollister found that pavement on 42% of streets and alleys is in good condition but that repairs for poorer thoroughfares need millions of dollars to fix.
A pavement condition index (PCI) report viewed by the Hollister City Council on Aug. 2 shows that sections of some 288 streets and alleys (see PDF) are in good to satisfactory condition, while 137 are in poor to very poor and failed condition.
The report prepared by Kimley-Horn and Associates, a planning and design consultant company, further lists 42% of streets and alleys as in good or better condition, 77% in fair or better condition and 23% are in poor or worse condition.
On March 5, the city engaged Kimley-Horn to evaluate the condition of city-owned roads and alleys. The council approved its report at a Zoom meeting Aug. 2.
Mayor Ignacio Velazquez said the report shows improvement since the last assessment, in 2016, that indicated the average road PCI was 69. It now stands at 74. A PCI value of 100 signifies a road in excellent condition while a PCI value of 0 represents a completely failed road.
It costs about $4 million to maintain roads in their present condition, Velazquez said. The city and Kimley-Horn should develop a plan to work from the center of the city outward so some of the older streets and alleys can be repaired along with the more traveled roadways, he said.
“Whatever the number is, $20 million or $30 million, we need to do it,” Velazquez said.
City Manager Brett Miller told BenitoLink that estimates show Hollister should spend $3 million-$5 million annually on road maintenance.
“I believe he [Velazquez] is saying we need to spend that much to catch back up,” he said.
The city gets $800,000 to $1 million annually in gas tax funds, Miller said, and for the next few years it will receive a share of Measure G funds of about $3 million a year.
Measure G, a ballot initiative that created a 1% sales tax increase for 30 years, would generate $16 million annually for a total of $485 million for road improvements. Of that, San Benito County and Hollister will each receive 47.5%, while San Juan Bautista will receive the remaining 5%, according to the Council of San Benito County Governments.
Tim Miller from Kimley-Horn and Associates told the council via Zoom that road conditions will continue to worsen without sustained, targeted funding. Repairs would take numerous forms, he said.
“There’s no silver bullet, there’s no single method that’s going to allow us to maintain and repair the roads,” he said. “We need a mix ranging from least costly methods from overlays to more costly reconstructions. The challenge is balancing preventive strategies to the more expensive rehabilitation and reconstruction strategies.”
Councilman Rick Perez asked at the Aug. 2 session whether the poor-to-failed alleys can be repaired considering the limited budget that concentrates on major streets.
He said it’s unfair to residents who live on alleys and pay property taxes that repairs don’t extend to their neighborhoods.
Other related BenitoLink articles:
Measure G funds on track to meet first projection
RMA director estimates current county funds not enough to keep up with road maintenance
Transportation sales tax measure picks up steam
Study says Hollister must spend $3 million more annually to maintain road conditions