It appears a chip seal experiment on 14th Ave NW in Altona didn't work out as hoped.
In a trial run last summer, the former gravel road was resurfaced with the treatment in order to create a hard driving surface, however it hasn't held up, resulting in large breaks in spots.

"It didn't hold up, but that's why we used it as an experiment. We wanted to get our feet wet in the chip seal product," said Public Works Manager, Clint Derksen. "I do think there are good applications for it. I'm not sure if the limited base we had there to work with was quite the right fit." He noted, the harsh winter didn't help either. 

Based on discussions leading up to the work, Derksen said the contractor felt the base borderline fit the criteria, but was willing to give it a try.

"When he got here, he was actually very happy with the base that we had. The dust control that we did prior to him getting here, maybe four weeks before, really firmed everything thing up. I guess it was a bit misleading," added Derksen. 

Most of the damage has happened in spots that were known to turn to washboard when the road was still gravel. Those spots are also where typical dust control applications would break up first, noted Derksen. 

While the warranty on the work has since expired, Derksen says the contractor will be returning this summer to add another layer of the product in an effort repair the damage. 

"We did two layers last year. Maybe three is the answer," he noted, adding he has a few ideas he'd like to run by the contractor before the work starts. That includes excavating the damaged spots and installing a GEOweb, a soil stabilization product, followed by 8 inches of back-fill. 

"I think that would maybe bring the road back for a much longer period of time," said Derksen. "In a majority of the road, it held up, there's just a few select spots where it went south."

A more permanent solution for the road is still being explored.