At its December 20, 2018 regular meeting, the Board of County Road Commissioners passed a Failed Condition Road Policy.  Prior to the adoption of this Policy, the Road Commission sought input from all of the 18 Township Boards in Van Buren County.  The Policy addresses the Road Commission’s duty to maintain its infrastructure assets as “efficiently and cost effectively as possible”, in the best interest of the taxpayers of Van Buren County. 

 “The Policy was adopted by the Board to guide staff in classifying a ‘Failed Road’.  Once identified, the Policy offers a means to open the lines of communication between the Road Commission, the Townships, and the residents of the County, to seek solutions for improvements.  The Policy also identifies steps the Road Commission may take to decrease its liability, and to maintain the segment in a manner that is reasonably safe for public travel”, said Lawrence B. Hummel, Engineer-Manager for the Van Buren County Road Commission. 

 The Van Buren County Road Commission pulverized nine (9) miles of Primary Road in 2018 at a cost of approximately $345,721.51.  These were road segments that had failed beyond the point of cost effective maintenance.  The new gravel surface allows Road Commission staff to maintain the segments in a manner that is both safe and cost effective. Seven of these nine miles will see additional work in 2019 and, assuming funding stays stable, those seven pulverized miles could be paved as early as 2020 or 2021.  Two of those nine miles will remain unpaved as funding, traffic counts and conditions do not warrant the need for paving at this time.  The Board tentatively approved the pulverizing of five (5) additional miles in 2019 in its Preliminary Budget. 

 Said Hummel, “In 2017, $1.2 Million of the Road Commission’s budget was spent patching potholes and broken-up/failed roads.  It is our hope that with the adoption of this Policy, the Van Buren County Road Commission can move to address these failed segments in a more cost effective manner.”


Click HERE for a copy of the Failed Condition Road Policy.