Pilot Program Paves the Way for Concrete Repairs

City officials gathered to mark the beginning of concrete street repairs in Hancock Park in June 2016. From left: Sarah Dusseault, Chief of Staff for Councilmember David Ryu; Greg Spotts, Bureau of Street Services; Cindy Chvatal, President of Hancock Park Homeowners Assoc.; David Ryu, Councilmember for Council District 4; Kevin James, President, Los Angeles Board of Public Works and Nazario Sauceda, Director, Bureau of Street Services. Photo: Sheila Lane.

HANCOCK PARK— A concrete streets repair program launched by the city of Los Angeles in 2016 has so far come in on time and under budget, according to an August motion by Los Angeles City Councilmember David Ryu.

The pilot program was intended to determine the cost and feasibility of fixing concrete streets, which are significantly more costly to repair than asphalt, citywide.

The program’s success means some the city’s most needy streets, many of which have gone unrepaired for decades, may soon be fixed.

Under the program thus far, two Hancock Park streets have been repaired by the city’s Bureau of Engineering, and a third was approved in June for repair by an independent contractor. All three projects came in below city cost estimates.

“[Councilmember Ryu’s] support was instrumental to complete [the repairs] on time and on budget,” a spokesperson for the city’s Bureau of Street Services said in a prepared statement.

Ryu’s motion calls for a cost comparison of using city crews versus outside contractors to fix concrete streets, an analysis of the longevity of concrete repairs compared with asphalt repairs and a study of neighborhood residents’ satisfaction with the program.

According to Hancock Park Homeowners Assoc. President Cindy Chvatal, so far the community is “thrilled” the neighborhood’s much needed street repairs — which a 2007 historic designation mandates be made in concrete — are finally happening after years of waiting.

“It’s all moving forward,” said Chvatal. “We’re now just waiting for a schedule of start dates.”

Additionally, Chvatal said, she hopes the success of Hancock Park’s repairs will encourage the city to look at concrete as an alternative to asphalt citywide, not only for aesthetic reasons, but for environmental ones as well.

“With global warming, concrete is cooler” and retains less heat than asphalt, she said.

Ryu has asked the city to report back with next steps by late September.

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