Roadwork redone after major mistake; residents say it's a 'waste -

Roadwork redone after major mistake; residents say it's a 'waste of taxpayer money'

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By KMOV Web Producer By KMOV Web Producer

ST. LOUIS ( -- Just six days after the St. Louis Streets Department laid new asphalt down in a South City alley, crews came back to rip it all out.  News 4 learned that the project wasn’t done right.

Neighbors called News 4, wanting to know how much taxpayer money was wasted on the mistake and what’s being done to make it right.

The alley is the dividing line between the city and the county.  It’s been a gravel road for more than a decade until city crews decided it was finally time to pave it.  But now, they’re going to have to pay to do it twice.

Ken Other was just getting used to his newly-paved alleyway.  No more dust, no more potholes, no more country living in the city.  But it didn’t last long.

“I had asphalt here when I left for work yesterday morning.  It was gone when I came home from lunch,” Other said.  “Now we’re just back to a muddy, dusty mess.  It’s just a waste of money!”

Just six days after city street crews laid new asphalt over the alley behind Hamburg Avenue, they ripped it out.

“If they had done it right... because I even asked the guy last week, I said ‘oh you’re finally paving it,’ and he said, ‘but we’re doing it the cheap way,’” Other said.

The city tried to save money by just paving over the gravel, but that made the asphalt higher than the ground around it, which forced water to run off and into homeowners’ yards, garages and basements.  It’s a $2,000 job down the drain.

“We made a good effort.  We have smart people who do stuff.  This one didn’t quite work, and we’re out that money.  But we’re going to come back, we’re going to make it right and we’re going to get it done,” St. Louis City Streets Director Todd Waeltermann said.  “If things go right, we could have $10,000 to $12,000 in this alley.”

Crews are waiting for rain to clear out of the weather forecast before they get back to work.  We’ll let you know when it’s done right.


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