Road & Bridge Department maintains 286 miles of paved roads and 393 miles of gravel roads through a network of three district road crews.
The department operated FY17 with a $10+M budget that allowed the million dollar asphalt project on the Bottle Bay Road and the purchase of five new dump trucks. The 10+% reduction in budget for FY18 will most directly impact the rotational replacement of the oldest heavy trucks with high mileage and larger repair costs.
The Road & Bridge Department consists of three district shops.
DISTRICT 1: Commissioner – Glen Bailey, Foreman - Jason Topp - Sagle, Blanchard, south to the Kootenai County boundary and north to Tweedie Road
DISTRICT 2: Commissioner – Jeff Connolly, Foreman – Dan Brower - Priest River/Priest Lake, east to (including) Carr Creek and south to Hoo Doo Loop
DISTRICT 3: Commissioner – Dan McDonald, Foreman – Tom Klopman - North of Sandpoint, including Hope and Clark Fork, north to Boundary County and west to Carr Creek Road.
Each district has a Foreman, Assistant Foreman and nine heavy equipment operators. The operators are responsible for most of the maintenance of their equipment but each district has a designated mechanic.
The most recognized seasonal maintenance work of Road & Bridge is snow plowing and traction sanding. Crews roll out at 4 AM for priority school bus routes, applying aproximately 30,000 cubic yards of sand annually.
Spring requires the deployment of road sweepers to remove the residual sand from hard surface roads to improve vehicle traction and reduce dust. Pothole and surface repairs are begun as soon as roads begin to dry out. Once load limits are off, 11 graders are deployed restoring gravel road surfaces and prepping 232 miles of road for road stabilization - dust abatement treatment for the summer.
The summer months are the busiest season for the crews as major road reconstruction begins as soon as the load limits are lifted. In addition to the reconstruction projects, right of way maintenance includes grading, brushing, ditching and culvert replacement, mowing road edges, and is interspersed with crack sealing and chip sealing existing hard surface roads throughout the county system. Another crew is assembled to install roadside delineators (reflectors) and replace those damaged by snowplowing. Striping of roads begins in the spring with layout marking before striping is applied.
The administrative side of the Road and Bridge Department is located at 1500 Highway 2, Suite 101, Sandpoint. It consists of a Road and Bridge Director, a Staff Engineer and two administrative assistants. The office is responsible for all personnel matters, record keeping on all expenses, where the dollars are spent, on what road, project or equipment, and arranging for all bids on any item over $25,000 or quotes on any item over $5,000. We have a tremendous amount of telephone exposure plus traffic in the office for permits, variances, right of way information, addresses and general information. We try to keep the public informed of what is going on so they can arrange for delays, detours or any other road problems.
Phone: (208) 255-5681
Fax: (208) 263-9084
Matt Mulder, P.E.
Right of Way Technician