After a funding package opens new opportunities for the area, the Kent County Road Commission commits to using the resources to their fullest potential.
The Kent County Road Commission (KCRC) maintains a network of nearly 2,000 road miles and 170 bridges within 21 townships throughout the greater region surrounding Grand Rapids, Michigan. The network includes nearly 660 primary road miles (typically longer distance, higher volume corridors that connect centers of population and employment and provide access to the state’s highway network).
In 2015, Michigan announced a comprehensive funding package that would boost the state’s investment in transportation. Leaders at the Kent County Road Commission recognized the opportunity that comes with increased budgets. They expanded the existing pavement preservation program on their primary network, starting with a commitment to spend 100% of the additional funds on roads.
Back then, just 65% of KCRC’s primary road network was rated in good or fair condition. The road commission examined network data, along with the future increase in spending levels, and set an ambitious goal to benefit their community: The primary road network would have 90% of roads in good or fair condition by 2025 (as defined by PASER). Then they set to work identifying annual improvement targets to measure yearly progress towards achieving the goal.
We’re on track to meet our goal in 2025.Steve Warren
Managing Director, Kent County Road Commission
To help prioritize maintenance schedules and monitor progress, the commission increased the frequency of their PASER assessments from measuring 100% of the network in three-year intervals to more frequent, annual evaluations.
“Some years we’re ahead of schedule and some years we’re a little under, based on resources. But we’re making progress and hitting the mark overall,” says Steve Warren, KCRC’s Managing Director. “We’re on track to meet our goal in 2025.”
* An expanded version of this story was published in the 2021 Spring Issue of the Journal of Pavement Preservation