Oakland tackles repairing city's worst potholes

Oakland this week will continue its 2019 pothole repair blitz, a road maintenance plan to repair potholes across the city.

On Tuesday, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf joined Oakland Department of Transportation Director Ryan Russo on-site where crews were working to repair the worst potholes in the city's backlog of residents' reports of road damage.

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said she'll spend millions of dollars to battle the pothole plague calling it "the worst pothole problem I have ever seen in my entire life living here." 

The backlog of pothole repair requests in the city was at more than 7,000 when the 2019 campaign was announced on May 20, according to the Oakland Department of Transportation.

Oakland's summer long, $7 million dollar Pothole Repair Blitz of 2019, will begin to address the half billion dollars of deferred maintenance aggravated by a succession of wet, road damaging winters.

"The commitment of our city towards equity is real. The focus on those underserved areas that has been traditionally left out because of institutional racism we are addressing that," said Oakland Councilman Loren Taylor.

"We have Oaklanders who pay 50% of their income to pay the rent. that if they break their axle or their rim and they can't get  to their job or they can't repair their car, they have to choose," said Oakland Streets Chief Ryan Russo.

Mayor Schaaf says Oakland roads are in such a bad condition, many streets need to be ripped up and replaced at a cost of $100 million.

"I'm even more excited  that the city council just approved a three year paving plan that will more than triple the amount of repaving done in this city," said Schaaf.

The ad hoc, do-it-yourself group, that got a lot of this started, the Pothole Vigilantes, are pleased with what they heard,  but they also say this.

"The community of Oakland has been told and promised a lot of things in the past and no one has really delivered. So, again, we think it's a great start but you know, the Pothole Vigilantes are going to continue going out and filling potholes." 

The Pothole Vigilantes will hold a recruiting meeting on June 12th. 8 PM, at West Oakland's Lowell Park.