Upgrading a gravel road to a bituminous surface road can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars per mile. Some gravel roads have increasing traffic but lack the truck volumes needed to warrant a full reconstruction project with a bituminous surfacing. With ever-tightening budgets, it is important to find an alternate low-cost construction method.
McLeod County undertook a rehabilitation project of County Road 54 in 2018 using cement-stabilized full-depth reclamation to increase the road strength, along with the application a double chip-seal surface. Unfortunately, the road has not performed as desired. The chip-seal surface has debonded in many areas, exposing the stabilized surface.
McLeod County received a $20,000 grant through the Local OPERA Program to evaluate the road for potential causes of its poor performance and to determine potential repair and rehabilitation options. The goal is to improve the condition of the road, so it performs as intended.
The evaluation showed that the stabilization wasn’t fully effective. It found issues related to the construction process. Next steps for McLeod County focus on working with the contractor for resolution and identifying appropriate fixes for current conditions. Those fixes may include adding gravel to the current surface or paving the entire road.
For additional information, check out these resources:
- Fact sheet: Evaluation of a Cement-Stabilized Gravel Road (PDF)
- Presentation: Cement Stabilized Base & Chipseal — County Road 54 (PDF)
- Engineering Report: McLeod County CSAH 54 Evaluation (PDF)