Strategies & Street Maintenance Background
Flowers & Associates has been involved in street reconstruction and maintenance projects for over 25 years and have had the opportunity to work with a number of agencies. These agencies include the cities of Santa Barbara, Camarillo, Goleta, and Carpinteria as well as the County of Santa Barbara and County of Ventura. We have developed a tailored approach to overall street maintenance based on this experience. We will discuss our philosophy and approach to street maintenance and street reconstruction and illustrate how our approach will stretch your street maintenance dollars.
Flowers & Associates’ streets project managers all have design, field marking and construction experience so they have a complete understanding of the entire process of pavement evaluation, street maintenance and repair methods. These methods include reconstruction, overlay, point repairs with road slurry, and road slurry seal (Type 1, 2 and 3), Cape Seal, and multiple coats of road slurry seal (Type 3 with Type 2 finish).
We have developed strategies from our experience that reduce the overall cost of street repair and maintenance. Additionally, we have developed methods to work within an agency’s limited budget to provide interim solutions to extend pavement life for the money expended.
Our services can include evaluation of available data on streets, visual evaluation of all of the City’s streets and preliminary categorization of each street’s maintenance requirements, preliminary assessment of cost of repair for each street, long range project planning, development of long and short-term budgeting requirements, prioritization of improvement work, as well as pavement marking, design and construction services. Street maintenance programming could be applied to the entire street system which includes drainage facilities, concrete improvements (Curb, Gutter, Wheelchair Ramps, etc.) as well as A.C. Pavement (Point Repairs, Road Slurry Seal, Cold Milling, Overlay, Pulverize with Overlay, and Full Depth Replacement).
Well maintained streets are an important component of an agency’s overall image, appeal and function. Our extensive experience with street maintenance coupled with our desire to assist with the preservation of the client’s reputation makes Flowers & Associates uniquely qualified to perform this work.
In the course of establishing ourselves with agencies, we have consistently used the same, well-qualified personnel so that these individuals can become familiar with the client’s mode of operation, which allows us to provide a higher level of service.
To illustrate our level of service and our ability to produce results with little direction, we have, as an example, worked with the City of Santa Barbara, City of Goleta and City of Gilroy and have been given as little information to start with as a list of streets and a budget. With this information we have produced an annual street maintenance program that includes total budget, evaluation of each street, assessment of each street’s maintenance requirements, breakout of streets into three construction contracts (pavement preparation, slurry seal and overlay), developed budgets for each of the construction contracts and have balanced all project costs to meet the City’s budget, and prepared construction contract documents. We then monitor and control our budget as well as the contractor’s budgets to complete all the projects within the original overall project budget amount.
During the course of work on these types of projects, it is not uncommon for changes in budgets and streets to occur. These changes are always taken in stride and the appropriate changes to the contract documents made. In addition to this, we set up street maintenance programs with adequate contingencies to allow for the typical unknowns that arise on a project. Our understanding, attention to detail, ability to adjust to change, and concern for the client’s interests allows us to integrate seamlessly with staff to implement the goals and objects established.
Flowers & Associates stresses quality in the services provided. We strive to project the client’s image of being responsive to the public’s needs on all of the projects we perform. Our street projects impact and inconvenience more people than probably any other type of work. When we provide construction services, we work to notify people and respond immediately to their inquiries. Our designs are carefully thought out with consideration to balancing cost, function and maintainability. We also apply our QA/QC procedures that include proven processes and independent office and field checking.
Flowers & Associates works closely with clients to set realistic budgets. We have an exemplary record of performing our work within and sometimes significantly under budget. This record also extends to the construction of projects with which we are involved.
Approach to Projects
We look at interfacing between the various stakeholders in street maintenance projects, how we select the type(s) of repair, our approach to budget management, our approach to pavement maintenance programming, and our approach to providing design and construction services.
A typical approach for Overlay and Slurry Seal Projects:
- Evaluate Streets
- Perform coring to determine asphalt thickness
- Can also perform non-destructive testing
- Survey existing monuments
- Perform topographic surveys of existing ramps for replacement
Approach to Working with Stakeholders
Successfully developing and implementing street maintenance projects involves teamwork. The more cohesive the team is, the better the project outcome. The team approach, when properly implemented, reduces conflict and problems, improves quality and reduces effort and cost. The team as we define it includes the public, City, contractor and the design / construction services professional.
Working with the Public
- We strive to deliver effective noticing to the residents
- We strive to make sure once streets are posted the work is performed on schedule
- We ensure that critical facilities (schools, hospitals, fire departments) are taken into consideration for closures and scheduling contractor’s work
- We are visible to the public while we perform our inspection services when construction work is in progress; we are readily available to respond to citizens’ questions and issues
- We respond to residential/business inquiries in an expeditious and courteous manner
Working with the City
- We employ a proactive approach to all of our projects, anticipating problems and giving the City the benefit of our experience and knowledge
- We never become complacent on a project, even after we have secured a contract. We are always looking for ways to improve service and reduce cost and most of all we never take our agency relationships for granted
- We keep City representatives informed on all critical issues and are available at a moment’s notice
- We respond expeditiously to City representative calls, emails, or onsite meetings
- When the project is finished we prepare a comprehensive Final Report which includes daily reports, meeting notes, photographs and other project information. These reports represent a complete file on the project, and we prepare them for every project we do.
- Working with the Contractor
- We work cohesively with contractors and sub-contractors, based on established professional relationships
- We have a reputation for being judicious and fair with contractors
- Local contractors are familiar with our standards of quality and typically know what we expect before the project gets underway
- Because we are familiar with most contractors we understand their strengths and weaknesses and work with them to improve the quality of the finished/delivered product on behalf of the City and its residents
- We understand the construction process. We are familiar with contractors’ strengths and weaknesses and know how to address the weaknesses to obtain a satisfactory project
- We provide contractors with specifications that are highly structured and clearly outlined so they know what is expected and they can develop their bid accordingly; this reduces extra charges resulting from bid document discrepancies
- We pay attention to the bid schedule so the work is rationally organized; this makes it easier for a contractor to bid, resulting in more favorable unit prices
- We set up the contract documents to be tailored to a type of contractor, e.g., Slurry Seal, A.C. placement and other specialty contractors to improve manageability and reduce overhead and mark ups