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Road crews take extra steps to fix I-696 in cold

Posted: 6:27 PM, Nov 20, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-20 18:27:12-05

Concrete needs to be well above freezing to cure.  Road crews are racing against Mother Nature to get I-696 resurfaced in Macomb County.

7 Action News has reported on the fallout of a several weeks long road work stoppage earlier this fall.  

Communities have announced that some road projects just won’t be completed until next year due to weather.

Still, work continues on the I-696 fix in Macomb County.

“We have a lot of controls and measures in place to make sure we are getting what we are asking for,” said Alan Ostrowski, an MDOT Construction Engineer & Project Manager.

He says MDOT is out monitoring work, inspecting ground and concrete temperature and making sure road crews are taking numerous extra steps needed because of the cold.

Ostrowski says crews are heating the ground before pouring concrete and water used in concrete mix.

“We have boilers at our concrete plants that are heating water up to make sure the concrete is warm,” said Ostrowski.

The chemical process of the concrete curing also generates heat, helping in the process.  MDOT is putting specialized thermal tarps over the roadway to hold in the heat.

“MDOT and the contractor are committed to getting this done and getting people back on this road,” said Ostrowski.

7 Action News reached out to area professors who specialize in such work, and they say with such measures taken the road should cure properly.

“We will have traffic in both directions on 696 before the end of the year,” said Ostrowski.