From Karen Glover

Wow…I really had my eyes opened wide today.
I’m constantly intrigued by the array of lackadaisical answers, non-answers, incorrect answers, half-correct answers, or just plain ridiculous answers doled out to me on a regular basis.
As you know, I, along with countless others, are concerned with the deep/wide pothole craters/cracks/bumpy/lumpy/unlevel terrain located at The MBTA/ Clarendon Hill Bus Terminal.

The absence of quality work of every MBTA patch job is increasingly more haphazard, hit- or-miss and downright sloppy.
I’ve developed a heightened curious interest in asphalt quality and paving techniques. Herein lies the reason for my comments regarding assinine, glib, non-answers to my basic questions.
So here comes the eye opener! During my past Sunday’s bus ride to Twin City Plaza, in front of the Store, Glass Stop on McGrath Highway, I suddenly thought I was hallucinating! This section of highway is really a combination of street/highway. My eyes became riveted upon the most beautiful paving street/highway repair…truly a work of art! I thought, “Why doesn’t The MBTA pave The Clarendon Hill Towers Bus Terminal as professionally as this excellent pave job here at McGrath Highway?”
Also, this pave job at McGrath Highway is completely even and level. It looks as smooth as velvet.
I have no idea when this McGrath Highway pave job was done due to not regularly traveling this route. It’s obvious a high-grade asphalt, not the cheap, inferior, low-grade alsphalt repeatedly used at The MBTA/Clarendon Hill Towers Bus Terminal. This pave job at McGrath Highway was accomplished with specifications to last idenfinitely, as in many years to come…
Upon returning home, I finally did an on-line asphalt and paving search. Lo and Behold!…
another eye- opening experience!! It turns out there are varying grades of asphalt, requiring specific heating up and cooling down temperatures and techniques. Some newer grades of asphalt require advanced expertise in application. especially during the detailed heating up and cooling down process. Different grades of asphalt are specifically appropriate to be applied depending on the season of the year as weather variables may affect the entire process. There are additional facets of asphalt application, but these basics are listed on this page.
It would be enlightening and advantageous to learn the name of the competent company that paved McGrath Highway so expertly and beautifully. This company has know-how and very likely could provide additional, knowlegeable answers to my questions. Anyhow, is McGrath Highway the city or state responsibility? Idk. The bus terminal is The MBTA responsibility. Perhaps Brad Rawson, our Liason to MBTA and also in charge of all city transportation, should assume responsibility to do his own asphalt research to then conduct informed conversations with The MBTA regarding all of the above nuisances of asphalt and paving techniques.
The MBTA works this bus terminal to here-and-there sloppily apply some low-grade
asphalt to the huge pothole craters where a bus tire could become lodged. A few additional random potholes receive this slob job, while the majority of potholes/cracks remain unfixed. All this “fixing” really amounts to nothing of value or permanent, as The MBTA’s poor choice of low-grade asphalt disintegrates and crumbles into pieces of rubble in a predictable few weeks time.
Perhaps if The MBTA took responsibility to carefully level out the terrain, select high-grade asphalt, perform a mindful and expert execution of the job in its entirety…maybe an expert job would, in fact, last for many years?! Think of all just the labor costs The MBTA could save themselves!
Nevertheless, when I mull over the ridiculous answers I’ve received when just asking the most basic, rudimentary questions about asphalt and paving…I have received absolutely ridiculously assinine non-answers from several officials who obviously know zero about asphalt. I’ve been repeatedly told there’s only one grade of asphalt!
If you’d like to witness an example of a paving job beautifully done, take the #88 Bus to the bus stop in front of The Glass Stop Store on McGrath Highway. Then, compare also the beautiful aesthetics of this properly done pave job to the hideous and unsightly pave-down-half-the-street residential street paving project the city currently has underway.
During several recent Ward Meetings, the “mayor” simply brushed off and spoke in her trademark dismissive tone of voice, regarding the negative feedback from residential residents regarding her “economical money saving approach” to half-a-pave job per street.
Well, Madam “mayor,” perhaps consider these residential homes are worth millions of dollars. Homeowners would prefer their streets to have a refined appearance; not to have their beautiful homes situated on a third-world country look…hence, the “mayor’s preference of sloppily, half-paved streets. The most important issue, beyond positive aesthetics, as Billy Tauro emphasized in one of his recent articles, are the resulting sharp, ragged edges of half-paved streets.
Half-paved middle-of-the-
road streets pose a predictable, dangerous hazard to pedestrians, disability apparatus, baby strollers, tires, heavy equipment vehicles, etc. just as the ragged edges of potholes/cracks can likewise injure pedestrians and equipment.
Here’s one basic solution: could somebody send the “mayor,” Brad, the city council, this entire administration…a Compre-
hensive Tutorial on Asphalt and Paving, asap!
cc: KB, “mayor” Brad Rawson,
Liason to MBTA
MBTA General
MBTA Board
of Directors

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