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December 5, 2019

Community Update

By John A. Corella, P.E. – Director of Engineering/Public Works

The Basics of Roadway Reconstruction

At the December 11th City Council meeting, City Engineering Staff will present a contract to complete Phase 6 of the City’s Pavement Management Program.  The streets that are proposed to be repaved are:

• The West Whitewater Neighborhood Street Improvements. This Project will replace the asphalt on Shifting Sands, Whispering Palms Trail and Sky Blue Water Trail from Ramon Road to Mission Indian Trail.

• South Panorama Neighborhood Street Improvements. This Project will replace asphalt on Avenida La Paloma, Avenida La Gaviota and Whispering Palms Trail from Ramon Road north to Baristo Road and Baristo Road from Landau to Whispering Palms Trail.

• Avenida Ximino Neighborhood Street Improvements. This Project will replace the asphalt and fix drainage on portions of Vega Road, Avenida Ximino, Susan Drive, Paulina Avenue, Walker Street, Joaquine Way and Perlita Road. 

• Avenida Maravilla (La Pasada) Street Improvements. This Project will replace the asphalt on Avenida Maravilla from Vista Chino to the northerly limits of Avenida Maravilla in the La Pasada Community.

When these roadways are under construction, motorists will have to endure a few inconveniences until they are completed. Once finished, you will see the results of nice, new smooth roads to drive on.  So, how do we reconstruct the roadways?  In preparation for this work, I will give you the “Basics of Roadway Reconstruction.”

From the onset of Project initiation, the Engineers designing the Projects have to determine how to reconstruct each particular roadway.  There are different layers of material that will make up the completed roadway, layers very similar to how a cake is constructed. As in a four-layer cake, a baker must determine the thickness of the layers, what goes in between the layers and what kind of icing will go on top.  In a roadway’s case, a four-layer roadway will typically have the following layers:

• Layer 1 is Native Soil:  The Native Soil is what exists today within the roadway area that most likely existed there prior to the roadway being built.  The Native Soil may or may not be acceptable for the stability needed to construct a roadway on top of it.  Soils Engineers are called on to complete a “Soils Report” which ultimately determines whether the Native Soil is acceptable for a roadway to be built on top of it.  If acceptable, it will it will remain in place as the “subgrade” and compacted to a required percentage (typically 95%) that will essentially “firm” up the Native Soil and remove any voids.  If the Native Soil is not acceptable, the Soils Engineer will require a specified depth of the Native Soil be removed and replaced with acceptable soil that can be compacted.

• Layer 2 is the Base:  The Base is what the asphalt is placed on and is considered the working foundation for the roadway.  Any skimping on the Base will result in failures down the road (pun intended).  The Base is brought onto the site and spread to a specified thickness, anywhere from 4 to 8 inches and sometimes more depending on the capacity of the roadway.  The Base is made up of a different size of crushed rock from ¾ inch to fine dust.  Sometimes there are other recycled materials in the base, e.g. concrete, asphalt and other crushed building materials.  The Base is compacted and is always to 95%.  Base creates a very hard surface. The rolling machines you see on a paving project are compacting this Base making it ready for the next layer.   

• Layer 3 is the Base Paving:  Base Paving is asphalt applied directly onto the Base and typically is made of a larger crushed rock (3/4 inch).  Base Paving is placed at a of maximum of 3 to 4-inch layers at a time on a roadway up to 8 inches thick in total (this is about maximum for this City, but it can be thicker as required).  Again, the rolling machines will compact the Base Paving making it ready for the next layer.  

• Layer 4 is the Cap Paving:  Cap Paving is the final lift of asphalt that is applied to the Base Paving.  This Cap Paving is the last layer of the roadway; the icing on the cake.  As with a cake, the icing is what you taste first. In the case of the Cap Paving, this is what automobile tires ride on and what the driver ultimately feels.  The Cap Paving is more expensive and composed of no more than ½ inch rock which provides a smoother riding surface.  This the last roller compacted layer to make sure that there are no voids along the roadway surface.

This was a very basic and typical roadway design introduction.  We do get more creative and it is more complicated to explain when we add in Cement Treated Base (CTB), Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement (RAP) and Rubberized Pavement, which I will save for another time.

Remember to be extra diligent in construction zones, observe the signs, drive within the posted speed limits and overall, be safe.  Happy motoring!

If you have any questions regarding this Community Update and the Projects discussed, please call me, John A. Corella, P.E. at 760-770-0327 or email me at JCorella@cathedralcity.gov .

NEWS

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Snow Fest Happens on Saturday, December 14th

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North Pole Village at Snow Fest 2019 Expanded North Pole Village • Santa Arrival • Free Train Rides • Tree Lighting • Holiday Market • Snow Bubbles   Bring the entire family to the “North Pole Village at Snow Fest,” presented by Quick Quack Car Wash, in Downtown Cathedral City on Saturday, December 14, 2019 from 11 am to 7 …

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EVENTS

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NEW CATHEDRAL CITY RESIDENTS & BUSINESSES MIXER

NEW CATHEDRAL CITY RESIDENTS & BUSINESSES MIXER

Did you recently move or start a new business in Cathedral City?  Then come the New Residents and Businesses Mixer hosted by the City of Cathedral City and the Greater Coachella Valley Chamber of Commerce.  You will get to know more about your city and the people who are here to serve you.  Plus, you will get to meet other …Read more.

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First Friday Art Walk - Perez Plaza H and I

First Friday Art Walk - Perez Plaza H and I

Go Where ART Lives! Cathedral City is the place for wonderful art and design galleries. Every First Friday of the month, the galleries in Perez Plaza Suites H & I will host the First Friday Art Walk along Perez Road from 5 pm to 8 pm between Date Palm Drive and Cathedral Canyon Drive. You can meander in and out …Read more.

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Cookies, Cocktails and Crazy Sweaters

Cookies, Cocktails and Crazy Sweaters

Indulge on some free holiday cookies, enjoy a purchased beverage or two, and watch your fellow neighbors and friends compete in the “ugliest sweater contest.”  This contest takes place in six bars in Cathedral City, over six weeks, with one cherished Golden Pass valued at $600 in prizes.  All presented by the Cathedral City Gay Business Association.  Anyone 21 years …Read more.

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Holiday Christmas Show by Bette King Productions

Holiday Christmas Show by Bette King Productions

In cooperation with the City of Cathedral City and the Mary Pickford Theatre, we are pleased to announce that Bette King Productions and her Productions Extraordinaire will offer a season of variety musical show starting on December 11th and will run through May of 2020. The performances will occur in the large, comfortable Theatre 10. These are the type of … Read more.

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North Pole Village at Snow Fest

North Pole Village at Snow Fest

This annual event captures all the holiday spirit and places it at one location with a lit Main Street at Santa’s North Pole, holiday music and carolers, Santa Claus, holiday tree lighting ceremony, a 20,000 Candy Cane Drop for Kids, Snow Bubble Play for Kids, children’s bike giveaways, free movie at the Mary Pickford Theatre, free ice skating passes to …Read more.

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Snow Fest Concert with Singer Emily West

Snow Fest Concert with Singer Emily West

America’s Got Talent Singer Emily West will perform a full concert during this year’s Snow Fest at the new CVRep Playhouse in Downtown Cathedral City on Saturday, December 14, 2019 at 7:30 pm. Emily West won crowds over as a finalist on America’s Got Talent with her re-imagined versions of songs like the Moody Blues’ “Nights in White Satin” and …Read more.

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Movies in the Park - December 28

Movies in the Park - December 28

Gather the family, blankets, snacks and drinks and head to Cathedral City’s Panorama Park for “Movies in the Park”

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For Questions or Comments, Contact Chris Parman, Communications and Events Manager
cparman@cathedralcity.gov