City using new approach to tackle potholes

(WISH Photo/ Kevin Stinson)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – The city of Indianapolis announced Tuesday a partnership with the Indiana Department of Transportation to address pothole problems more quickly and permanently.

Together, through the early opening of a Rieth-Riley Asphalt plant, they have purchased hot asphalt–a resource typically only available in warmer months.

During the winter, Public Works crews use cold patch, which is a mixture of small stones and liquid asphalt as a temporary fix.

But Indianapolis Department of Public Works officials said they are purchasing more permanent hot mix early this year because of this season’s extensive pot hole problem.

“This winter has caused more potholes than probably any winter that we can all remember,” said DPW Director Lori Miser.

Miser said the move costs about $10-thousand dollars up front. But with so many potholes this winter (about 4-thousand more have been reported than this time last year) she said it will save money in the long run.

“The cold mix that we use – while its decent – it tends to pull out of the holes at some point. And so this way, we can fix them permanently. We don’t have to go back and we can do a better job,” she said.

“This historic winter season has left historic numbers of potholes on Indy roads,” said Mayor Greg Ballard in a statement. “By Rieth-Riley opening their hot asphalt plant early and beginning hot mix deliveries today, DPW’s crews can provide a stronger, more permanent patch when filling potholes across the city.”

It’s welcome news to frustrated drivers.

“Good. Very good,” said Michael Beard. “Anything to get these streets together because it’s a mess.”

Public Works crews and contractors were already using the hot mix Tuesday.

Below are numbers you can call and links you can visit for pothole-related issues:

In Indianapolis:

  • Click here to report a pothole or file a claim.
  • Click here to reach the Mayor’s Action Center online.
  • Call the Mayor’s Action Center at (317)327-4MAC (4622)

For state roads, to file a complaint with INDOT: provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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