CITY OF BERKELEY STREET REHABILITATION
AND REPAIR POLICY
Updated March 2009

A. STREET REHABILITATION POLICY

Section 1. General Policy 

It is the policy of the City of Berkeley that there shall be a 5-year Street Rehabilitation Plan for the entire City to be adopted by the City Council.

The primary purpose of the street rehabilitation program is to maintain a safe surface conveyance system in the public right-of-way for vehicles, bicycles, transit and pedestrians.  The right-of-way also provides ancillary functions of a water conveyance system and location of public utilities.

The City shall strive to identify and implement integrated solutions that address the multiple demands on the street infrastructure that are designed for safety, environmentally sustainable and economically efficient over the long run.

The Plan shall make use of all available funding and set priorities for rehabilitation of streets in accordance with their use, as follows:

  • Arterials
  • Collectors
  • Residentials
     
    (Within the collectors and residential street categories, bus and bicycle routes shall be given first consideration.)

To the extent practicable, these priorities shall be consistent with:

1)  the City’s General Plan policy of encouraging use of forms of transportation other than automobiles,

2)  the Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB) goals regarding water quality, flooding potential and runoff control, and

3)  the City’s Measure G goal of an 80% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

Section 2. Assumptions

1) Emergency and interim work for trench and pothole repair will be done and funded outside this program.

2) Available funds for street rehabilitation include Gas Tax, Measure B Sales Tax, and  other federal, state, and local funds appropriated by the City Council for this purpose  during the annual budget process.

3) Additional sources of funding other than those above will be needed to ensure acceptable levels of effort in street rehabilitation.

Section 3. Funding

Federal and State transportation and other similar funds shall be used for repair of arterials. When all eligible work on arterials has been completed in a certain year, these fund sources may be applied to collectors.

All Berkeley's Measure B Sales Tax funds allocated for local streets and roads, all new gas tax subventions, as much of the current gas tax subventions as available and other similar funds shall be used for street rehabilitation as follows:

  • 10% for Arterials
  • 50% for Collectors
  • 25% for Residentials
  • 15% for Discretionary and Demonstration Projects

The fees assessed to mitigate for excessive deterioration on and wear and tear of streets resulting from construction activities, public or private, shall be used for street rehabilitation.

To provide for maximizing the use of the limited funds available, the Program may provide for paving publicly owned unimproved streets in areas other than those zoned S1 (industrial and manufacturing) if at least 75% of the cost is borne by the adjacent property owners.

Section 4. Specific Policy 

The Street Rehabilitation Program shall be based on the following criteria, listed in order of
priority:

1) Street rehabilitation shall be coordinated with utility, sewer, water contamination runoff issues, and other underground activities to minimize the cost and maximize the effectiveness of rehabilitation and improve the environment.

2) Long term cost effectiveness, long term street pavement durability and aesthetics are important for priority setting and repair methodology selection.

3) In order to benefit the greatest number of residents, heavy street use (as indicated by traffic counts and bus routes designated in AC Transit's Comprehensive Service Plan) shall be given great consideration.

4) Demonstration and test projects for new technologies should be located in high visibility and heavily used areas.  See attached document on background and recommendations for the trial permeable paver sites.

5) Rehabilitation of an entire street, rather than one block at a time, shall be scheduled as much as possible. 

6) First hand assessment of streets, as well as computer based analysis, shall be a basis for street rehabilitation program development.

Section 5. Program and Policy Development and Update

The 5-year Street Rehabilitation Program shall be adopted by the City Council and the 5-year planning process shall be adopted as a City policy as follows:

1) Each year, the 5-year program shall be reviewed and updated formally by the City Council, with the advice of the Public Works Commission.

2) On an annual basis coinciding with budget preparation, the Street Rehabilitation Policy shall be reviewed and updated formally by the City Council, with advice of the Public Works Commission.

3) Both the 5-Year Program and the Street Rehabilitation Policy shall be reviewed and updated annually to ensure that the revolving 5-Year Street Plan is consistent with the policy stated herein and for consistency with General Plan and Area Plan policies.

B. UTILITY TRENCH AND POTHOLE REPAIR POLICY

Section 1. General Policy 

It is the policy of the City of Berkeley that there shall be an annual Utility Trench and Pothole Repair Program for the most heavily used streets and in the priority order, as follows:

  1. Arterials
  2. Collectors
  3. Residentials with bus routes

Additionally, the other residential streets shall be repaired on an area by area basis at least every five (5) years. The program shall be reviewed and updated annually to ensure adherence to the City policy.

Section 2. Assumptions

a. Emergency work for trench and pothole repair will be done as a part of this program.

b. Utility company created trenches will be repaired by the respective utility company, and no City resources will be used for these purposes.

Section 3. Funding

a. Gas Tax subventions and General Funds of the City shall be used for pothole repair.

b. Sanitary sewer funds shall be used for City created sewer trench repair.

Section 4. Specific Policy

In addition to applicable policy under Street Rehabilitation Policy, the Utility Trench and Pothole Repair Program shall be based on the following criteria:

a. A trench or a pothole is defined as any pavement surface irregularities with a change of elevation (plus or minus) of more than one (1) inch in twelve (12).

b. All on-going trench and pothole repair shall use the permanent repair technique, i.e., prepare the trench or pot hole into a rectangular shape, fill with hot asphalt mix, and roll to match the grade adjacent to it.