An emergency patch-up for Fort Florida Road just cost $50,000.
Now a longer-term fix for nearly half of that road – as well an upgrade to a section of West Highbanks Road – are just weeks from getting underway.
Amid safety concerns, the DeBary City Council approved more than $270,000 for the projects on Wednesday.
Officials blame Henin Group — the developer of two subdivision expansions – and its big dump trucks for damaging both roads.
But it’s too soon to try to get money from the developer to help pay for repairs, interim City Manager Ron McLemore told council members.
DeBary has to wait until the work is done before it can calculate the developer’s share for the work, McLemore added.
Holding Henin responsible
The city can hold Henin Group responsible for a majority of the damage to Fort Florida Road under a road-maintenance agreement with DeBary, he said.
Dump trucks hauling dirt from Springview to Riviera Bella damaged Fort Florida Road, prompting DeBary to declare an emergency Jan. 17. That’s when the city approved spending $53,000 to quickly fix the worst sections of the road.
That work is done. But dump trucks started using West Highbanks Road, causing additional damage to that road, according to City Council member Erika Benfield.
“Now you’ve got the rerouting of all these trucks that just destroyed the other road,” Benfield said Wednesday.
Council members hired low-bidder P&S Paving of Daytona Beach for nearly $170,000 to put down an asphalt overlay on 1.2 miles of Fort Florida Road. Officials said that will extend the life of the roadway for several years.
It will upgrade sections of the road that didn’t get asphalt overlay last year. That project spanned about 1.8 miles and cost about $180,000.
Fort Florida Road wasn’t built to modern standards. It was paved for the first time about eight years ago using temporary asphalt meant to last roughly five to seven years.
Traffic, primarily development related, increased over the last two years.
The city on Wednesday also agreed to hire P&S Paving to mill and resurface more than 4,000 feet of West Highbanks Road between Fort Florida Road and the railroad tracks.
That work will cost $100,000. Construction could start in March and take about a month to complete. A similar resurfacing job was recently completed on a section of West Highbanks from the railroad tracks to Donald E. Smith Boulevard, city officials said.
‘There’s no stopping them’
Benfield and City Council member Mike Brady also said they want to look at options to possibly lower the speed limit on West Highbanks. That would require a traffic study, McLemore said, among other steps.
Benfield said drivers go as fast as 50 miles per hour in the 40-mile-per hour section of that road.
“There’s no stopping them,” she said. “We need to be concerned for the children.”
City Council member Stephen Bacon said Henin should chip in something at the front end of the projects.
“My question is what did you do with the developer?” Bacon asked McLemore.
The manager said staffers have been in contact with Henin and will get money from the developer in the future.
“The outcome is when the job is finished we’ll know what the cost is and we [will] sit down with him with the agreement and we [will] figure out what his share of that cost is, which in this case would be predominate cost,” McLemore said. “But we have to get the job over first.”
McLemore: Trucks OK
At the Jan. 17 meeting, residents accused of Henin of using loaded dump trucks that were too big for residential roads.
McLemore said the city checked and Henin met state regulations when it moved dirt from Springview to Riviera Bella on Fort Florida Road.
“Now, you have to allow trucks to move from one site to another site or they would never move off one site, and there are rules under the state [about] how you do that,” McLemore said. He noted that Henin agreed not to send loaded trucks between the properties in the future.
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