Why are Michigan's roads so bad?

8:52 PM, Jan 9, 2013   |    comments
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KENT COUNTY, Mich. (WZZM) -- Governor Rick Snyder plans to address bad roads in his State of the State address.

Jon Rice with the Kent County Road Commission says Michigan roads have three strikes against them-- terrible freezes, heavier truck loads, and shrinking budgets for repairs.

Rice says they use several methods to repair roads like chip and seal, microsurfacing, and overlays.

Chip and seal only waterproofs the roads and reduces erosion. Microsurfacing does the same thing but dries faster and includes a mix of materials. Overlays rebuilds the roads structure.

Chip and seal is the least expensive at $40,000 a mile. With the cost of business going up the road commission hasn't seen a budget increase since 1998.

Doing a full rip out and repair costs about $1.5 million per mile. Rice says that's all the more reason lawmakers need to address their shrinking budgets.

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