October 21, 2021

Daisy Hollow project gets rolling

Two-week construction job to correct uneven portion of roadway

Todd R. McAdam/managing editor

Backhoes load a pair of Cortland County dump trucks Tuesday on Daisy Hollow Road in Harford. The two-week project will excavate several feet of asphalt and earth to rebuild the road, which has been settling for decades.

Every two minutes Tuesday, a 10- ton truck roared north on Daisy Hollow Road in Harford, loaded with earth and asphalt, often passing an empty 10-ton truck headed south.

Follow their trail a few hundred yards, and you’d find a pair of trucks — one in each lane — waiting as a pair of backhoes filled them with the surface and subsurface of the road in a two-week project to settle, once and for all, an unevenness that made drivers feel like they were driving over a 12-foot-wide, yards-long pothole.

For at least 20 years, a portion of the road has continued to settle anywhere from 6 to 10 inches a year — creating a fault line that can be hazardous. The fix over the years has been to just pour more blacktop over the area.

There’s 40 inches of blacktop on that side of the road,” Cortland County Highway Superintendent Charlie Sudbrink said Tuesday during a Highway and Solid Waste Committee meeting.

Sudbrink said crews will dig down 4 to 6 feet, put in geo-textile grids, drain tiles, new culverts, geotextile fabric and move the road 4 to 5 feet all in an effort to keep water away and increase the road’s strength and stability.

“Hopefully this geotextile grid will re-stabilize the road and get the water out of it.

But you really won’t know that until the spring after we go through the winter?” asked committee Chairman Christopher Newell (R-Cortlandville).

Sudbrink said the best solution to fixing the road was driving piles — long concrete cylinders — into the ground.

However, that would cost millions, something the county doesn’t have. The project will be paid using around $80,000 of state Consolidated Highway Improvement Program funds and take about two weeks to complete.

“So ultimately that road probably shouldn’t have been built there way back when they first built it,” Newell said.

“Probably,” Sudbrink said. “But you got to get from Virgil to Harford somehow.”