Pavement Management

Nationwide, municipalities are faced with ever increasing street maintenance budget problems due to reduced availability of funds.  The problem is compounded due to an apparent increase in the number of deteriorated streets each year and a disproportionate increase in the cost per mile for maintenance.  The City of Bettendorf has confronted this issue directly by developing a pavement management program to get ahead of these problems and avoid long-term budgetary difficulties.

Street pavement is one of the major capital investments of a municipality.  It is also one of its most important assets.  In the absence of a well-maintained street system, the transportation needs of the public, business, industry, and government cannot be met.  Further, local real property values tend to be diminished by poorly maintained streets.  Therefore, it is important that agencies at all levels of government develop improved means of allocating their limited financial resources to maintain street pavement.

Since May of 2015, the Public Works Department has been implementing our pavement management strategy.  This strategy is based on Financial Consequence-based Pavement Management.  It focuses on keeping the good streets in good condition rather than the historical approach of fixing the worst streets first.  Pavements are treated as assets and maintenance decisions are based on financial impacts of those decisions in order to ensure the lowest lifecycle cost of the asset.

Investment decisions will be guided by four (4) key principles woven together by an overarching theme of continually improving the safety and accessibility of the pavement system.

First, preserve what we have by using low‐cost treatments that slow the rate of deterioration. This helps pavements last longer and delays more expensive repairs into the future. 

Second, consider impacts to the overall transportation system, not just at the location of a specific project.  This means that pavement rehabilitation and reconstruction projects would be identified and completed in concert with other work within the right-of-way.  An example of this would be to coordinate with utility companies that have identified capital needs within their own network such as water or gas main replacement projects. 

Third, maximize the benefit of every investment.  Pavement repairs are performed at the optimum time by waiting until the end of the remaining service life of the prior treatment before initiating the next repair action.  Priority also is given to higher traffic roads to benefit the greatest number of users. 

Fourth, consider and include the environment and social benefits of the work when developing projects.  Good roads are an important foundation for the economy and quality of life for the users of the transportation system.

Pavement management is the process of planning, budgeting, funding, designing, constructing, monitoring, evaluating, maintaining, and rehabilitating the pavement network to provide maximum benefits from the available funds.  A pavement management system (PMS) is a set of tools or methods that assists decision makers in finding optimum strategies for providing and maintaining pavement in a serviceable condition over a given time period.

The condition of a street is affected by a number of factors, including:
  • Surface Condition (roughness, cracking, etc.)
  • Moisture Intrusion and Drainage (street profile, cross section, storm sewer)
  • Sub-grade strength and conditions
  • Traffic characteristics and loading
  • Pavement Age
  • Prior Maintenance (overlays, micro resurfacing, crack filling, seal coating, patching)

Each of the above listed factors contributes to the overall condition and lifecycle of the transportation network.  A variety of rehabilitations techniques are implemented each year to ensure the overall transportation network remains at a high level of service.  Click here to view a guide to street maintenance activities in Bettendorf.