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Braham, MN 55006

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City Engineer’s update on 2018 Street Paving

Engineer’s Update – Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018

The contractor discussed options for placing bituminous on  the areas of the street project that are still soft. They proposed to place bituminous on all of Cypress between 3rd and 4th. This material will be compacted as much as possible. Part of the 4th and Cypress intersection will have bituminous placed with little or no compaction as a temporary measure for the winter. Their proposal is due to the closing of their local bituminous plant at the end of this project.

To wait for frozen ground would require that they transport material from the permanent plant near St. Cloud. This would be problematic as the low temperature and travel time would make it difficult to maintain a high temperature in the mix to allow compaction. They would need to remobilize their paving equipment as an extra expense to the street project.

We agreed with their proposal on the temporary paving for the intersection. We anticipate that a portion of the intersection as well as some of the west side of Cypress between 3rd and 4th will require repair before the wear course is paved.

The contractor will pave today and tomorrow. They anticipate returning to place shouldering next week. Those areas that do not have wear course will not get shouldered this year. The shouldering operation would potentially be detrimental to the bituminous surface with only the bituminous base course placed.

Engineer’s Update 10/18/18
Hardrives completed the bituminous base course on 3rd Street, Eastgate and Cypress from County Road 4 to 4th Street. They used one truck to partially pave Cypress from 3rd Street south along the west side. Douglas Kerr is scheduled to raise the manholes and valve boxes tomorrow. Hardrives intends to start wear course paving on Monday morning.

They will complete as much of the base course on Cypress between 3rd and 4th as is practical also. The current condition of the subgrade on Cypress between 3rd and 4th along with the 4th Street Intersection will require that part of the area will wait for the street to freeze. The bituminous base course will be placed on frozen ground as a temporary measure. We will leave the wear course off any of Cypress between 3rd and 4th to minimize the amount of rework next spring.

Engineer’s Update 10/8/18

The 4th & Cypress intersection remains soft, and may be too soft for a layer of blacktop.  He noted the City may have 3 options-

  1. Pave one lane of the intersection going north,/south and east/west.
  2. Leave the intersection undone until it freezes and firms up the ground, then apply a cold weather paving on the intersection that will be torn out in the spring. He said he’d talk to  Hardrives about this option and the cost for them to come back in for a temporary winter paving after the ground is frozen.
  3. Apply one temporary layer to the intersection now with one pass of the roller for compaction, and take it back out in the spring. If it’s too soft and ruts under the paver, this option won’t work.

Miller noted that for snow plowing, it makes sense to try to pave the entire intersection for the winter.  He said the softness is too deep to just dig out the wet soil and replace it.  He said there is too much moisture trapped in the soil, and the only thing that can really be done is to let it dissipate, which takes time.  He said winter freezing will dissipate a lot of the moisture. 

He reported the S. Cypress road did get shaped up, but with rain in the forecast this week, things can change.  He noted that the west side of the road between 3rd and 4th where the water main was replaced is still slightly soft. The block of Cypress between 3rd and 4th will only have one layer of bituminous so that any repairs can be made in the spring and the final lift of bituminous placed over any repairs.

Monday, Oct. 1, 2018

Hardrives is supposed to be coming to Braham this morning to start cutting back driveways and shaping the roads, with paving planned for next week.  Rain is in the forecast for almost every day this week, which could possibly set them back.


City Engineer Brian Miller drove through the S. Cypress Street Project late yesterday afternoon after Douglas-Kerr, the utility contractor, had been there to remove their debris and level their work areas out. Here is his report—

The roadway contractor will complete the final preparation before paving. They will put a crown in the road and take out the washboard and dips. The 4th and Cypress intersection isn’t great, but it is improved. The block between 3rd and 4th is still firm, but there are areas holding water. Hardrives has this project on their schedule for shaping next week, dependent on weather. They intend to shape the roadway next week and pave it the following week. The current weather forecast is for rain the next couple of days. That may delay Hardrives.

I could feel that there is a soft area in the 3rd intersection and a good part of the 4th street intersection is soft. The block of Cypress in between is still firm.
Future updates on this project from the City Engineer will be posted on the City’s website www.braham.com

Sally Hoy, City Administrator


MNDOT’s 2019 projects include a new T intersection with a Continuous Green traffic signal system at Hwy 65/Hwy 107 Braham.  Luke Wehseler from MNDOT presented the project to the Braham City Council on Tuesday, July 10, 2018.  Project details can be found on the MNDOT website http://www.dot.state.mn.us/d3/projects/braham/

For any questions, please contact:

Luke Wehseler, PE
Project Manager/Consultant Coordinator
District 3 Project Development
7694 Industrial Park Road
Baxter, MN 56425
Direct: 218-828-5721

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