City Administrator can’t say when it will reopen
On Sept. 1, the City of Williams made the decision to close the portion of Husted Road from E Street to Highway 20 due to what City Administrator Frank Kennedy described as dangerous road conditions. As of Monday, Kennedy said he couldn’t give a date for when he expected the road to be reopened.
According to Kennedy, officials determined that the section of Husted Road was unsafe for motorists to travel on at the beginning of this month. One stretch of the road in particular – about 75 feet along the southbound lane – was of concern, Kennedy said, which included a “depression of the pavement of about 18 inches.”
“It was dangerous,” Kennedy said. “If someone were driving motorcycle on Husted Road and night and hit that section, it could have been really bad.”
Since Sept. 1, the city has worked to repair the problem section. As of Monday, Kennedy said that the road base had been rebuilt there, and was awaiting repaving.
“We have the spot repaired, but it’s not paved over yet,” Kennedy said. “That paving will happen soon, but there are other spots that are out there that are pending to be that bad, and we want to get those fixed, too. I would say that there are about a half a dozen spots that are going to be just as bad.”
Kennedy said that maintaining that section of road has been a continuing problem for the city. The road sits on clay soil, and there is water in the ditches on either side of the road year-round. The clay soil absorbs that water, and the pavement is depressed by heavy truck traffic, he said, which is more of a problem during this time of year, during tomato harvest. Until the city is able to do a more complete reconstruction of Husted Road and put down a better road base, the problem will persist, Kennedy said. For now, the city will have to continue to patch the problem areas, and consider its options for limiting the type of traffic on the road.
“That’s something the city will have to consider, closing (Husted Road) to truck traffic, at least from E Street to Highway 20,” Kennedy said. “…That’s where all the trucks are coming through, and that’s where it’s the worst.”