Project that encompasses four deteiorating streets scheduled for completion in early October

GARY ALLEN - Crews dig out sidewalks, curbs and gutters in preparation for replacement in the next few weeks.

The city of Newberg is continuing a large-scale pavement and sewer line replacement project on East Third, Fourth, Fifth and Wynooski streets, and are expected to complete the project in early October.

The streets have been closed off block by block to complete the work, although local residents can still access their homes and postal carriers are still delivering the mail.

The East Fifth Street wastewater line replacement began in late July and is comprised of installing 1,000 lineal feet of new sewer lines beneath the street, as well as 200 lineal feet beneath South Chehalem and Willamette streets. They are also replacing connections between the main lines and dozens of homes.

"The old pipe material is either clay tile or has cracks, contributing inflow and infiltration to sewer flow," Senior City Engineer Paul Chiu said. "Therefore, the pipes need to be replaced."

Upgrading pavement will occur after the sewer lines are replaced in the same area. That work will take shape through October on Fourth Street from River Street to Willamette Street, on Fifth Street from River Street to Wynooski Street and on Wynooski Street from Willamette Street to Seventh Street.

The project is part of the city's pavement preservation program.

"The city of Newberg has over 91 percent of city streets in asphalt pavement, 6 percent in graded gravel surface, just over 2 percent in oil mat and less than 0.3 percent in concrete." Chiu said, adding that pavement preservation is a proactive and cost-effective way to use public dollars to maintain, preserve and protect existing asphalt.

Instead of tearing down and replacing with new, pavement preservation extends the pavement life and provides smoother rides. There are various treatment methods available for pavement preservation, depending on the condition of the existing roadway. Crack seals, slurry seals, chip seal, ultra-thin overlays, grinding and inlays are examples of treatment methods. The least expensive is crack seal and the most costly is full-depth reconstruction.

At some sites the pavement will be ground down and new asphalt laid over it, while other areas will see the pavement and road bed removed and the street rebuilt from the ground up.

The effort is necessary because asphalt deteriorates at an exponential rate: when the asphalt cracks it allows moisture to develop beneath it and corrode the subbase of the road.

"The analogy will be an oil change for the vehicle, which is cheaper than doing nothing and let the vehicle run into disrepair and failure," Chiu said.

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