Department of Public Works

Implementing Winter Road and Infrastructure Maintenance


For immediate release:


For more information, contact:

Robert Goulding, DPW Public Information Manager



Since adoption of the Sustainable Infrastructure Plan and passage of the infrastructure bonds in November 2016 the City has paved over 12 miles of roads and rehabilitated nearly 4 miles of water mains. More work is planned for this coming construction season. While this all far exceeds the historical average, we are still dealing with the inherited challenge of old infrastructure and operating at a time of year when the weather places severe stress on our infrastructure.

Infrastructure Challenges: This winter’s heavy rains and rapid freeze-thaws have presented us with another challenging season. We have a deep frost in Vermont and when we have repeated warm-ups, that moisture either leads to drainage challenges or freezes on the surface when temperatures dip. Additionally, this adds stress on pavement and pipes as the ground begins to move. We have been dealing with a number of potholes and water main break repairs as is often the case with late winter/early spring.

Recent Work: To combat this, our crews are working weekends and nights - salting and scraping sidewalks and streets, doing spot repairs on our freeze-thaw damaged roadways and often working overnight to fix water mains. Yesterday (Sunday), crews started at 6AM -- working into the afternoon hours on sidewalks and roads. Today (Monday), we have a full team of sidewalk tractors out making their way around the entire city. As plow crews returned today, they traded their plows with salt spreaders for dump trucks and went out to do cold-patch repairs on the streets. As temperatures allow, we will bring our “hot box” out and make hot mix - which serves as a more permanent patch on potholes.

Note About Colchester Ave: Last fall, we have paved or patched 0.85 miles of Colchester Ave -- from University Pl to Barrett St, including a shim coat (a thin, preparatory coat) from Barrett to Nash. The shim course that was laid is not a substantial layer and is expected to have deterioration over the winter; as it deteriorates the substantial cracks, potholes, and other defects that are below the shim are showing through and becoming more prominent.  We have not put down the top-course of pavement between Barrett and Nash at this time. Toward the end of our recent construction season during paving we began finding voids under the remaining asphalt on this stretch of Colchester. We have used a variety of methods to determine the cause and the investigation resulted in delays to finishing the top-course of paving between Barrett and Nash. Our contractor will finish this paving job in spring of 2019. Crews are also cold-patching this stretch of road, where needed.

Reports Welcome: We welcome your reports at or by calling our customer service at 802-863-9094. To view this year’s upcoming construction projects, please visit To read more about implementation of the Sustainable Infrastructure Plan, please visit Thank you.


Press Release Date: 
Attached Press Release: 
City Department: 
Public Works Department