Hold The Potholes: Domino’s Helps Smooth Over W-B Streets
WILKES-BARRE — Oh, yes they did!
Domino’s has dished out some cold cash to make sure drivers maneuvering through the city’s pothole-plagued streets are less likely to have their piping-hot carry-out pizza bounce off the passenger seat.
Some Department of Public Works employees were busy filling some of the mini craters on North Main Street with hot patch Tuesday morning thanks to a $5,000 “Paving for Pizza” grant the city received through the pizza chain’s latest national promotion.
“We supply the labor, they supply the hot patch,” Mayor Tony George said at a news conference on a North Main Street sidewalk to announce the project. “We’re going to patch these holes as far as $5,000 will take us.”
Drivers might notice graffiti on some of the patches.
George’s administrative assistant, Tyler Ryan, and a Domino’s marketing representative laid down stencils over some of the patchwork and used white spray paint to display the “Paving for Pizza” promotion title and its “Oh yes we did” slogan. Another marketing representative shot video.
Scenes from Wilkes-Barre’s paving project likely will end up on the promotional website pavingforpizza.com alongside projects in other towns such as Milford, Delaware, and Burbank, California.
Domino’s customers can nominate their town for the contest on the Paving for Pizza website.
Domino’s received several nominations from Wilkes-Barre residents, because the pizza chain reached out to the city to partner for the program, Ryan said.
She said a program announcement and statement from the pizza chain corporate office is expected today.
City Director of Operations Butch Frati said the road crew patched about three-quarters of the potholes targeted along North Main Street between North and Chestnut streets — about 1 mile of street — before the approximately 3 tons of hot patch on the dump truck was depleted.
Hot patch costs about $100 per ton, Frati said, so the grant should pay for about 17 truckloads. The city usually spends about $2,000 on hot patch and $30,000 on cold patch annually, with hot patch being the better-quality choice but requiring a larger crew to put down. Another $15,000 is spent on emulsified asphalt, which contains crushed stone.
Frati thinks most of the money budgeted for patching and road repair this year has been spent, so the grant is certainly welcome after a rough winter, with many potholes remaining in the city.
The city received about $1.2 million in state liquid fuels money in March for road work, but that funding has to cover patching and paving material, anti-skid material, snow plowing and removal, employee labor, street signs, equipment leases and more.
Frati noted a crew will spend some mornings over the next few weeks patching potholes and their afternoons on different assignments. He said they’ll be out patching again on Thursday.
City Administrator Ted Wampole noted Domino’s provided a pizza lunch for the entire Department of Public Works on Tuesday.
Seth Gollhardt, who owns the area Domino’s franchise of 12 stores — soon to be 13 when one opens Saturday in Honesdale — said he’s “really excited about Wilkes-Barre getting picked” for the program.
Gollhardt said he wanted to treat the DPW workers to lunch because “we really appreciate them making our streets better.”
George appreciates the contest nominations from residents and the funding from Domino’s.
“Potholes in Northeastern Pennsylvania are as prevalent as our region’s love for pizza,” he said in a written statement. “As Mayor, I am grateful to Domino’s for their assistance in patching potholes in Wilkes-Barre!”
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For video of Tuesday’s “Paving for Pizza” event in Wilkes-Barre and a Domino’s commercial about the program with this story on citizensvoice.com.