City Patching Up Pothole Problem - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE;

City Patching Up Pothole Problem

Add your comments at the bottom of this page.   Let us know about your pothole experiences.

Mayor Chris Beutler announced that the City considers the unusually high number of potholes in Lincoln streets an emergency situation and is shifting resources to increase repair efforts. 

At his direction, the City will more than double the number of workers from 30 to 72 by Wednesday.  The number of pothole crews will nearly triple from 10 to 25 or 30.

  • Five workers from the Water and Wastewater Division and four from the Traffic Division have been diverted to pothole repair today.
  • Parks and Recreation will have nine workers begin pothole repair tomorrow.  
  • For the first time, the City is hiring private contractors for pothole repair.  The City hopes to have eight, three-person private crews working on potholes tomorrow. 

"We are taking strong, decisive action to deal with the pothole situation.  We can not allow Lincoln's streets to remain in such a state of disrepair," Beutler said.  "Yes, this will cost more. We believe this is an investment we must make.  Consider that the average homeowner in Lincoln pays about $432 a year in property taxes to the City.  We all know that one trip to the car repair shop can cost far more than that, and it obviously is a matter of personal safety."  The Mayor urged the public to show their appreciation for the pothole repair efforts by driving very carefully in the vicinity of the crews.

The Mayor said the City acted immediately when potholes began appearing after the City's second major snowstorm.  On Dec. 31, he directed all street maintenance crews not working on snow removal to work on potholes.  Repair efforts have been hampered by the continuing moisture and last week's warmer temperatures, which created melting.  Despite those challenges, crews have filled 6,663 potholes over the past three weeks, using nearly 143 tons of material. 

Public Works officials say all the repairs now are temporary because crews are using a "cold mix." to fill the potholes.  The "hot mix" we require for permanent repairs is not available.  Crews are needing to repair some potholes numerous times. The City had exhausted the local supply of the repair mix and are currently trucking it in from Omaha.  At the City's request, local contractors have agreed to make more of the cold mix.

Crews will begin work on the arterial streets that carry the most traffic before on to those on the list of complaints.   Residents can report potholes and other non-emergency street problems in three ways: 

  • Call the Pothole Hotline at 441-7646.  If that line is full, callers can use the Neighborhood Hotline at 441-6300.
  • Use the online form available on the  home page of the City Web site,, under the heading Citizen Action Center (selected "Street - Pothole").  This form also may also be used to report stormwater, snow and ice problems.


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