Letter to the Editor

U.S. 231 problems actually rest in cityís water lines

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

To the Editor:

I have been reading today about how the city was disappointed that U.S. 231, inside the city limits, wouldnít be getting new overlay payment this year, and that they were concerned that the potholes would just get worse.

The potholes that we have on U.S. 231 are because of old failing water lines and their connections to properties. The potholes will continue to happen until their cause gets corrected. The failing lines (leaks or breaks), are sucking the road base down, and then causing the pavement above to sink and form holes. Nothing INDOT does will last longer than a few months until the water lines are replaced.

Patching is just a temporary fix, as we have seen these past years. The contract for patching by INDOT will look nice for a few months, but the holes will return, since the cause will still exist.

An overlay project would also look very nice, and seem like a good temporary fix, but the holes would just come right back. It would be just throwing a lot of money at an incorrect solution.

The city must be honest about what the problem is before it can get fixed. Donít pass the buck to INDOT on this one, it rests with the city. The city isnít at fault, it just has old water lines and connections that need to be replaced.

What needs to happen, and is the only permanent fix, is for the city to replace its water lines at the same time INDOT reconstructs U.S. 231.

The pothole problem will continue until that time, no way around it.

Gary Bowser


Editor's note: Mr. Bowser brings up a very good point regarding the need for new water lines in some of these trouble spots along U.S. 231 through the city. The City Council and Mayor Bill Dory discussed the matter in May, and Dory said the plan is for the Jackson Street water line and perhaps parts of the water lines along Washington Street to be replaced when U.S. 231 is reconstructed in either 2021 or 2022.