RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — With growing complaints of potholes damaging cars in Richmond, some coming from 8News viewers in the east end and northside, residents are finally getting a glimpse of the city’s plan to tackle the issue.
The city’s goal is to work on areas that need a touch up along the roadway. Crews have 19 neighborhoods on their priority list.
With the majority of roads listed in poor condition, the list of roads to pave is neverending.
“Right now we need to invest in our roads,” the Director of Richmond’s Department of Public Works, Bobby Vincent, said. Crews in Richmond are trying to fix nearly 200 potholes a day. The solution adopted by the city will last several months but it’s not the final answer to better road conditions.
“Do our best to try and eliminate the hazard,” explained Vincent, “and then when we have the opportunity we can come back and either pave that street or that neighborhood or a more permanent repair.”
Despite an audit revealing a need for $277 million for repairs, the ultimate goal is to improve poor roads into ones in good condition.
In his budget plan, Mayor Levar Stoney proposed $16 million for road improvement.
“That money is going to come from this budget so hopefully without me getting too political of where the money comes from I’ll leave that up to the mayor and our team,” Vincent told 8News. The City Attorney’s Office reports from November through February there have been 28 cases investigated out of 92 claims for damaged cars from potholes. Only two cases have been paid for, including Forest Hill resident Richard Allen.
“Completely satisfied with this experience,” Allen said. “I’m going to be completely dissatisfied if taxes go up.”
8News learned in December that the Richmond City Council passed a resolution to use a one-time payment of $2 million to repair damaged streets. Council members said Mayor Stoney never signed it.
Director Vincent said it’s best to tackle the road problems as a whole instead of a piecemeal approach of a few million at a time.