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Contact Info Department of Public Service
50 W. Gay Street
Columbus, OH 43215-9005
Office :  (614) 645-3111
Fax :  (614) 645-7805
Email : Contact Information

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(614) 645-3111

City of Columbus to Start Intensified Pothole Repair Effort Sunday

The city of Columbus will begin a two-week intensified pothole repair program Sunday, April 7, 2013.  Department of Public Service Street Maintenance crews will patch potholes daily during the effort through April 21, weather permitting.  Potholes cannot be repaired during snow, ice and rain events.

The pothole effort will be done within regular working hours at no additional costs, without using overtime. 

During the two-week intensified pothole repair effort, residents may report potholes through Facebook at Columbus Public Service or Twitter @ColumbusDPS, in addition to the customary 311 Customer Service Center.  To help the City better serve residents, the City asks residents to include the location of the pothole by referencing:

  • The name of the street where the pothole is located
  • The address of a home or business closest to the pothole
  • The direction of travel (northbound, southbound, eastbound, westbound) where the pothole is located
  • If it is a multi-lane street, the lane in which the pothole is located

Residents are also reminded to not use Twitter or Facebook while they are driving.  Both the state of Ohio and city of Columbus have laws that prohibit texting while driving.

City crews repaired 130,397 potholes in 2012, a 31% decrease from the 2011 pothole repair total of 190,196.  The City’s investment of more than $80 million to resurface more than 350 streets between 2010 and 2012, combined with a more aggressive pothole repair program in the past several years contributed to the decrease in the number of potholes repaired during the just concluded winter season:

City crews fixed a total of 25,386 potholes between November 1, 2012 and February 28, 2013, a decrease from 40,282 potholes repaired between November 1, 2011 and February 28, 2012

As part of the City’s more aggressive pothole repair effort:

  • The City repaired a combined 67,794 potholes during its annual spring pothole repair initiatives, 2010 – 2012:
  • March 18 – April 1, 2012:  12,646 potholes repaired
  • March 14 – 25, 2011:  20,593 potholes repaired
  • March 1 – 31, 2010:  34,555 potholes repaired (Followed snowiest February in Columbus history)
  • City crews repaired 34,849 potholes between November 1, 2010 and February 28, 2011, and 29,418 potholes between November 1, 2009 and February 28, 2010
  • City crews fixed 7,758 potholes in December 2011, more than the combined 7,541 potholes repaired during the previous two Decembers of 2010 and 2009 
  • City crews repaired 10,400 potholes in January 2012, more than the 7,597 pothole filled in January 2011 and the 8,653 potholes fixed in January 2010

Pothole patching is a year-round city of Columbus priority.  The standard for pothole repair is within three days after a service request is filed with the City’s 311 Customer Service Center.  The standard may go beyond three days when:

  • A very large volume of potholes are being reported
  • Snow, ice or rain storm that prohibit pothole patching; In these instances, the standard is to patch potholes as soon as possible

The severity of winter weather and the general condition of city streets drive the number of potholes.  From 2007 through 2012, the City has patched an average of 93,994 potholes per year.

Residents are encouraged to report potholes throughout the year by contacting 311 at 311 or 645-3111, or online at www.311.columbus.gov.

The City is responsible for repairing potholes on 6,381 lane miles of roadway; a lane mile is one mile of roadway multiplied by the number of lanes on the roadway.   

The two-week pothole repair effort will be funded through the Department of Public Service’s Street Construction Maintenance Fund.


                               City of Columbus Pothole Patching Fact Sheet

                                                                March 2013


  • The City of Columbus patches potholes on City of Columbus streets and parts of State routes 315, 33 and 104 that are in the City of Columbus
  • ODOT is responsible for patching potholes on I-70, I-71, I-270 and I-670
  • Columbus’ Pothole Patching crews are responsible for 6,381 lane miles of roadway. 
  • This effort is measured in lane miles because potholes can occur in each lane of a roadway
  • A lane mile is defined as one mile of roadway multiplied by the number of lanes in the roadway.  For example:
  • 1-mile stretch of roadway x 5 lanes in the roadway = 5 lane miles

Pothole Patching  policy and practice:

  • The process for patching potholes begins two different ways:
  • Residents contact 311 (call 311 or 645-3111, or online atwww.311.columbus.gov) to notify the City of the location of a pothole.  Please include an address or nearest address of a home or business where the pothole is located to help us serve you better.  The locations are then forwarded to the Department of Public Service to be scheduled for patching, or
  • Separate from, and in addition to, 311 requests, Department of Public Service crews are routinely deployed to locate and patch potholes.  These deployments are proactive standard practice that works in tandem with 311 requests to find and patch potholes.

Patching potholes is a City of Columbus priority:

  • The City’s standard:  Potholes are typically patched within three (3) days after a service request is filed with 311 to do so
  • This standard may go beyond three days because of:
  • A very large volume of potholes being reported.  In these instances, the standard is to patch potholes as soon as possible
  • A snow, ice or rain storm prohibits pothole patching

Columbus’ Pothole Patching crews are responsible for 227 square miles, much more than their counterparts in other Ohio cities:

  • Cleveland:  82 square miles
  • Toledo:  80 square miles
  • Cincinnati:  79 square miles
  • Dayton:  57 square miles
  • Dublin:  26 square miles
  • Grove City:  16.2 square miles
  • Gahanna:  12 square miles
  • Reynoldsburg:  12 square miles
  • Hilliard:  11.5 square miles
  • Upper Arlington:  9.67 square miles
  • Pickerington:  9.58 square miles
  • Worthington:  5 square miles
  • Bexley:  2.5 square miles

Columbus’ pothole repair crews are responsible for 6,381 lane miles of roadway, more than any other Ohio city

  • Cleveland:  3,000 lane miles
  • Cincinnati:  2,986 lane miles
  • Toledo:  2,700 lane miles
  • Dayton:  1,600 lane miles
  • Dublin:  502 lane miles
  • Westerville:  409 lane miles
  • Reynoldsburg:  270 lane miles
  • Worthington:  176 lane miles
  • Gahanna:  140 lane miles

Hot patching potholes

  • During winter, is most effective above freezing (32°).However, hot patch, at 300 degrees, does not bond well with the dramatically colder pavement in cold winter weather, including cold temperatures above freezing The hot patch shrinks away from, and does not conform to, the surrounding asphalt and the contours inside the pothole. Because hot patch does not bond well with a cold pothole and pavement, it is like cold patch:  a temporary fix Therefore, cold patch is typically used during winter months Cold patch is less expensive ($75/ton) than hot patch purchased during the winter from a private vendor ($100/ton)

Cold patching potholes

  • Cold patch is a temporary fix designed to repair potholes until they can be hot patched during warmer weather in the spring and summer if the cold patched hole reopens
  • Lifespan of a cold patch varies and is affected by traffic volume and speed of the roadway where the cold patch is made

City does have a limited supply of hot patch that it produces in an asphalt recycling machine.

The recycled asphalt is the waste asphalt when a street is torn up for resurfacing or reconstruction.

From 2007 through 2012, the City patched an average of 93,994 potholes per year

  • 2012:  130,397 potholes patched
  • 2011:  190,196 potholes patched
  • 2010:  133,517 potholes patched
  • 2009:  114,475 potholes patched
  • 2008:  115,415 potholes patched
  • 2007:    70,163 potholes patched

Total cost for asphalt (hot mix and cold mix) purchased to patch potholes

  • 2012:  $175,578 (2,426 tons)
  • 2011:  $319,991 (4,313 tons)
  • 2010:  $318,015 (5,126 tons) 
  • 2009:  $355,390.84 (3,893 tons)
  • 2008:  $391,132.73 (4,214 tons)
  • 2007:  $183,910.50 (3,194 tons)

Tons of hot patch used

  • 2012:  1,975 tons
  • 2011:  3,209 tons
  • 2010:  4,346 tons 
  • 2009:  3,100 tons
  • 2008:  3,208 tons
  • 2007:  2,636 tons

Tons of cold patch used

  • 2012:   451 tons
  • 2011: 1,104 tons
  • 2010:    780 tons
  • 2009:    793 tons
  • 2008: 1,006 tons
  • 2007:    558 tons

Columbus Pothole Patchers have other job responsibilities including, but not limited to:

  • Snow removal
  • Street cleaning
  • Alley surfacing treatment
  • Mowing
  • Underpass cleaning
  • Graffiti removal