CHICAGO (CBS) — Let street paving season begin. With warmer temperatures arriving, city crews are beginning work to resurface hundreds of miles of streets
Officials aim to repave 275 miles of city streets by the end of the summer.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel stopped by Hollywood Park on Peterson Avenue to officially kick off the 2018 paving season.
City crews will use huge grinding machines to rip up the top 2 to 3 inches of asphalt on dozens of city streets, preparing them for a fresh coat of pavement.
Chicago Department of Transportation Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld said the city also saves tens of millions of dollars in construction costs by making sure any utility work required on those streets is completed before the streets are repaved. That prevents the city from having to tear up fresh asphalt a second time.
“We are coming in, and only paving after that work has been done. So the street is restored once,” she said.
The mayor promised the temporary inconvenience for drivers will be worth it in the end.
“There’s a big difference when you finally have that paved road, versus a pothole-filled street. It takes work to get it done. This type of investment, though, allows you to have more businesses come your way,” he said.
The mayor’s office said, when this paving season is complete, the city will have resurfaced more than 2,000 miles of city streets since 2011.
For most streets, the entire process will take two to three weeks. Cars parked in work zones will be relocated, but no tickets will be issued, according to the mayor’s office.