County Highway Update

June 24, 2022

County Highway Update

CTH EF Update 7/26/2022

EF is officially open to all traffic

Paving wrapped up on the mainline and intersections on Monday 7/25. The highway department will have crews out on Tuesday 7/26 to grade driveways so the residents can get in and out until the paving is completed. Please use caution entering your driveways until the crews can get the grading done. Once the grading is complete the asphalt pavers will be directly behind tying in all the asphalt and concrete driveways as well as finishing intersections.

Paint striping of the new pavement will take place 7/27.

The remainder of driveway culverts should be installed on the project by 7/28.

Starting the week of 8/1, the highway department will be hauling fill material in to fix the steep slopes and ditch lines throughout the project. Flagging will continue through this process and small delays are to be expected.

Green Lake County Highway Commissioner

CTH EF Update 7/14/2022

Paving is underway on the CTH EF project in Berlin this week. By Friday, 7/15/22, the contractor should have completed binder material over the fragile areas of grade that were being protected from heavy traffic during the closure. The county plans to open the road back to AUTOMOBILE TRAFFIC ONLY this weekend (end of the workday 7/15/22), meaning no semi traffic. Class A and Class B vehicles will NOT be allowed through until the final lift of asphalt is placed to insure full protection of the suspect areas below.

The subcontractor is working with the county to complete these areas of the project first to get the road open as soon as possible. Monday, 7/18/22, the contractor plans on starting the final pass on the areas that were placed during the week ending 7/15/22. Meaning sometime mid-week (7/18/22-7/22/22), the road should be open to all traffic pending any weather and unforeseen delays.

Monday, 7/18/22 there will be a small closure set up for the day from the East side of Fountain Rd. to the intersection of CTH F and North Hunter St. The contractor will need to close that intersection off to complete their work on it.

After the intersection work on 7/18/22, the rest of the paving will be done under full traffic and a flagging operation. Continue to expect minor delays until the completion of the project as crews continue the paving, ditching, and shouldering of the project under flagging.

Green Lake County Highway Commissioner


CTH EF Update 6/30/2022

The Green Lake County Highway Department has scheduled July 7th to begin repair work on the areas of failed pavement on CTH EF in Berlin. This will be a three-company collaborative effort to fix the problematic areas properly.

The closure will remain in place from CTH D to Walmart in Berlin until tentatively the latter part the week of July 11th. All through-traffic please continue to use the detour. Anyone living on the project should please be aware of those problematic areas being milled out. These areas will be 4” lower than the parallel pavement for a few days until they get patched back in and will be milled gradually to prevent any drop offs on each end. The centerline will be a vertical drop so please proceed with caution.

Additional signage was installed to assist with the increased traffic expected for the 4th of July holiday weekend. Detour and closure signs were placed far enough out to warn motorists to take an alternate route. As stated earlier, this does not change the parameters of the closure, that remains the same.

Green Lake County Highway Commissioner


CTH EF Update Closure

CTH E and F in the town of Seneca will be closed to through traffic until further notice due to unforeseen circumstances. The closure will be at the intersection of CTH D and F to the East, Fountain Rd. and CTH F Intersection, and at the West entrance of Walmart on CTH F to the West.

The road will be open to anyone that lives within the limits of the project (anywhere the surface has been milled and re-laid) and to the businesses located within the project. We ask that you have a valid drivers license or proof of residence showing your address to assist you in case it is necessary. No Semi traffic will be permitted East of CTH D on CTH F.

The Highway Department is working on acquiring more detour signs to better mark the detour routes. We only have a limited amount of signage available to us and have everything out that the County owns. Next week we have some assistance coming from a traffic control company to help better the detour signage.  

We ask anyone going to or from the Neshkoro or Wautoma areas to take HWY 73 to HWY 21 to HWY 49 back into Berlin until the issue is resolved.

What’s Going On?

The subcontractor hired to do the cold in place (CIP) recycling ran into some unforeseen issues with the roadway. The problem being two-fold, one being the fact that years ago before the County paved over the concrete, the old slab settled in areas along the centerline. Before it was paved, those stretches were patched with cold mix asphalt. That causes two problems for the cold in place process. First being the gradation of the cold mix. It has no aggregate only sand mixed into it, which weakens the CIP, as well as traps water in the layer. Second, cold mix asphalt is full of diesel and cutting agents that do not react well with the oils added back in the CIP process.

The next issue that was not known about was the fact that the slab was inverted towards the centerline in certain areas causing any surface water to run to the center of the roadway with nowhere to escape through the concrete slab below. The water seeps in through the asphalt cracks and ends up sitting between the slab and the asphalt. When the contractor comes in to mill the existing asphalt, they go all the way to the concrete, picking up and mixing in both the water and the cold mix asphalt.

Now with all of this water and an adjusted emulsion due to the diesel and other chemicals in the cold mix, the water ends up coating the aggregates that the oil is supposed to bond to, leaving the oil to come to the surface by sliding around all of the water coated aggregates. Once that oil is sitting on top of the new roadbed, the water below can not escape, nor can the mix of aggregate, water, and oil below lock together and settle into place.

This causes rutting and sliding of the mix material below. The material will not stabilize until it has dried out and the oil can bond to the aggregate.

The subcontractor re-laid the lane that failed last week to level it back out, but the material continues to move and cannot be accepting heavy traffic.

Could it have been Avoided?

The issue with old roads like these is lack of records back then. No one knew that the concrete below the asphalt was settled and holding water in the center. No one knew that cold mix asphalt was placed down to level the road back before it was originally paved. The County did core sample the road before the CIP process was selected as the process to use, however the out of the 55,918’ of East and Westbound lanes, the chances of hitting one of the approximately 5,000’ of areas that had the problem are very slim. Clearly none of those areas happened to have a sample taken. The subcontractor company has been doing this process for over 40 years and is very credible. They worked together with the County and the project and never expected to see these issues. Even during the process, it was not discovered until the day after when the pavement began to fail.

These issues have nothing to do with the highway department, the subcontractor, or the CIP process. This is strictly an unforeseen job specific issue that was inevitable. CIP asphalt recycling is the best, cheapest, and most long-lasting way to deal with concrete pavement that has been overlaid with asphalt. It stands up well to reflective cracking to give a better and longer lasting product in the end. That was why this process was originally selected. There are better ways such as removing the concrete below, however Green Lake County does not have the budget to support a fix like that, so the alternative was selected to get the roadway fixed.

The highway department and its sub-contractor have been working endlessly since the issue arose to try and get it solved and open back to the public. At this point the County, CIP contractor and the paving contractor have come up with a plan to resolve the issue. However, the companies cannot just leave their current projects to fix our project. The County and its subcontractors will be looking at the week of July 11th to resolve the issue unless the pavement dries on its own in the meantime. Until then we will need to keep the road close to heavy and through traffic.

Thank you for your compliance in the matter and we apologize for any inconvenience this causes anyone in the meantime.

Green Lake County Highway Commissioner

Back to Article List