ShareThis Page

Mayor Peduto, Pittsburgh going all-out to patch city potholes

| Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014, 2:15 p.m.
James Knox | Tribune-Review
James Knox | Tribune-Review
Cars slowly navigate the pothole-riddled Negley Run Boulevard on Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014.
James Knox | Tribune-Review
Cars slowly navigate the pothole-riddled Negley Run Boulevard on Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014.
James Knox | Tribune-Review
Drivers put their brakes on as they navigate the pothole-riddled Negley Run Boulevard on Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014.

The squeaky wheel gets its pothole patched.

That was the message on Wednesday from Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto as city and state crews set about on a new round of patching Western Pennsylvania's teeth-rattling roads.

Peduto and City Councilwoman Deb Gross urged residents to call the mayor's 311 call center or send a Twitter message to the center via @pgh311 and report erupting craters. Motorists can call 1-800-FIX-ROAD to alert PennDOT about potholes on state roads.

Peduto said crews will respond quicker to potholes with lots of complaints.

“There's one on Butler Street that's probably 10 feet wide and quite long,” said Chuck Gilchrist, 71, of Lawrenceville. “There's another one that the buses swerve to get around. They rattle your teeth when you hit them.”

Peduto will dedicate 30 crews daily through at least Saturday to patch potholes. He said the break in the winter weather gives the city its first opportunity to do the work since the city's first “Pothole Blitz” last month.

The goal is to get a pothole patched within one day of a complaint, he said.

Steve Cowan, spokesman for PennDOT's District 11 headquarters, said patching crews were out all day Wednesday in Allegheny County. He said this winter has been particularly hard on highways. Crews will patch Thursday on West Carson Street between Stanhope Street and the West End Circle.

Since Nov. 12, District 11 has received 174 calls about potholes compared with 42 during the same period last winter, Cowan said.

Allegheny County spokeswoman Amie Downs said county crews do patching as part of routine road maintenance. People can report potholes on county roads by calling 412-350-2513.

The city will have 10 crews working during the day and 20 at night, Peduto said. Each has two or three workers, and they will be paid overtime to get their work done. Peduto did not know how much the cost would be.

He admitted the patching would be a temporary fix at best.

“We're going to patch them again and watch them fall apart again, and then we'll be into the spring paving season,” he said.

Peduto said Negley Run Boulevard running from East Liberty to Highland Park was in such bad shape that it will be milled down to concrete and left that way until it's repaved in late March or early April.

“With freeze-and-thaw that stuff pops very quickly,” Public Works Director Mike Gable said of the patching material.

Staff writers Bob Kerlik and Aaron Aupperlee contributed. Bob Bauder is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-765-2312 or

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.