City of Edmonds pavement assessments to start Aug. 13

The laser road surface tester will be seen in Edmonds starting Aug. 13.

The City of Edmonds has engaged Infrastructure Management Services LLC to complete a detailed inventory and condition rating of all roadways and select right-of-way assets owned by the city, and work is scheduled to start Saturday, Aug. 13.

The company will inventory and collect pavement performance data using a device known as a laser road surface tester (RST). This device measures pavement roughness, rutting, cracking and other surface distresses as it travels down the roadway. It will also be used to collect digital video and GPS information for cataloging right-of-way assets. The RST is a 2019 white Ford Transit with two roof-mounted laser scanners on the rear end of the vehicle that point straight down. Operated by three field technicians, the RST travels at posted speed limits and will survey each roadway at least once.

The collected data will be loaded into an asset management program specifically designed to assist the City of Edmonds with its long-term pavement preservation plan and budget.

If you have any questions, contact Ryan Hague at 425-771-0220 or via email

  1. Been there done that but still Council has not acted. What is Council’s intent in going forward with this expense?

    Shortly after Council stopped funding for street overlays, I had the good fortune to work with Public Works to help sort out our issues with our roads. Here is what was learned:

    Residential roads last around 28-32 years. Main streets last about 18 years. At the time in order to keep up with these needs we needed to budget about $1.5m per year or about $75/yr. Putting that in the budget every year would mean we would all get our local road replaced on average of about 30 years and main roads around 18 years.

    Council had several years of no funding but then began to budget some small amounts but not anywhere the level needed to keep our roads in adequate condition to not damage the sub structure.

    A few years back, Council funded a study similar to this one and we learned that we would were falling behind. That study proposed the amount that should be budgeted to catch up and to them continue with a plan to keep us on track.

    Now we are going to have another study?? We will learn that the roads have not repaired themselves and that the need is likely to show we are falling behind even more. When Council funded this study, they knew all about the earlier studies and funding short falls. Do they plan to review the results of this study and fund it?

    This is yet another example of why we should move toward Budgeting by Priorities. BBP would create more citizen input to the budgeting process. BBP was given one of the highest approval ratings in our Strategic Action Plan and still has not been done!

    Council has studied BBP in their retreats for several years but has failed to act. I am not hopeful they will do it this year, nor am I hopeful they will act on this new road study. Glad we are doing it, but let’s act this time.

    1. I appreciate this thoughtful response and agree. Clearly prioritization with more citizen input and transparency would help increase transparency in the process when the confidence of so many Americans in our civic governance seems to be eroding, to say nothing of our roads.

  2. I don’t believe you need a laser to determine that 196th between 76Th & 80Th Avenue West is destroyed.

  3. This is loooooong overdue. So many of our streets are in such poor shape. Once the assessment is finalized, this work needs to actually be done! Thank you.

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