Town Square

Paying For Potholes

Original post made by Carol Gilbert, Old Palo Alto, on May 31, 2006

I'm thinking that if Palo Alto took most of the money it spends on outside consulting, we would have enough money to fill the potholes and repair the sidewalks. And, we would be better off. Just because an opinion comes from outside, doesn't make it any more valid. Ostensibly we pay very good wages "to attract the very best people." Why don't we let them do their jobs?!


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Posted by Kyu Kim
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 1, 2006 at 12:15 am

Are potholes even a major concern for our city at this time? If you go to any other city, potholes are almost normal (doesn't mean it's fine and dandy) and to add to that, some cities (ie: saratoga) don't even have sidewalks in most of their towns. Our sidewalks take a beating from cars as the non-curb + parking design promotes the heavy on and off weight of automobiles. Outside consulting goes a long way in many aspects of our city. Perhaps we've been spoiled by perfectly smooth roads in the past. Plus, I personally think that Palo Alto has far more infrastructure construction going on all the time compared to other cities. Would I like it if our potholes were filled and sidewalks were smooth? Of course. Could I wait a bit and still love my city? Of course.

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Posted by Noah
a resident of University South
on Jun 2, 2006 at 8:21 am

Yes - Potholes and other street repairs are a major concern for our city. Perhaps you live on or adjacent to some newly painted roads, but at least in University South, the streets are terrible! Although a few "key" roads get repaved, it's a pretty bumpy ride all over PA.

You mention other cities - care to mention one? I've noticed better roads in Menlo, Mountain View, Redwood City, San Carlos, Belmont, Burlingame, and others... For all of those cities, I'm not talking about the main road to a big-box store, but rather small roads to friends' houses etc. In Palo Alto on the other hand, driving almost anywhere other than hwy101 we find pretty bad roads.

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Posted by Gordon
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 26, 2006 at 10:25 pm

I agree with Noah. I consider the roads in Palo Alto to be in very poor condition compared to most other towns close by such as Mountain View or Sunnyvale.

And what really ticks me off is that when they do resurface them, they promptly tear them up again and completely waste the money spent resurfacing. This happened to many streets in the Midtown area. Diana Diamond wrote a good article about this in the Palo Alto Daily.

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Posted by Ducatigirl
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 29, 2012 at 8:44 pm

What kills me is that the most expensive parts of PA have worst streets for potholes!

Th other annoying thing is that within two weeks of repaying Alma, they tear it up again to update the sewer, replace gas lines, whatever....why in the world do they not time these projects BEFORE repaving????

When I lived in the East Bay, back in the mists of history, the state was bad about letting potholes remain for months, even years on 880. After a number of people got flat tires and damage to their cars' suspensions, they started demanding reimbursement from the state and CalTrans, even taking them to court and winning. Amazing how fast the potholes got repaired and 880 got repaved!