Public Works
Welcome to the Butte County Department of Public Works, serving its residents since 1850. The Public Works Department maintains approximately 1,300 miles of roadways, including over 500 bridges and drainage structures and more than 18,000 road signs. Our goal is to provide you with the best customer service possible. If you are unable to find what you are looking for on our website, please call our office for more personal service.
Pavement Undulations Policy and Procedure

Pavement undulations shall not be installed within any public right of way within Butte County's jurisdiction without prior approval by the County Board of Supervisors. Pavement undulations will only be considered on local residential streets constructed to County Public Works Standards. Pavement undulations will not be approved for installation until the condition is reviewed, an Engineering Traffic Study (E.T.S.) is completed and recommendations are made by the County Public Works Department.

Residents may initiate the process of looking at traffic calming methods by raising concern over apparent inappropriate speeds on their neighborhood streets to the County Public Works Department.

The department staff may recommend that the identified problem be reduced or alleviated with other traffic control measures that include: Also see attachment I.

targeted enforcement
improving sight distance by trimming landscaping
installation of appropriate additional signing, striping or pavement markings
community educational outreach
temporary placement of the radar speed trailer

If after 3 to 6 months, residents still have concerns and/or staff determines these control measures are not sufficient to have a positive affect on traffic, the program procedures for requesting, investigating, prioritizing, implementing, and evaluating traffic calming options which may include the installation of pavement undulations will be initiated. In order for pavement undulations to be considered, the existing traffic conditions must meet all of the minimum pavement undulations application criteria. See attachment II.

If the minimum applicable criteria are not met, staff will notify the person and/or persons who voiced the original concern of the reasons why pavement undulations can not be installed for traffic calming. No exceptions will be allowed unless approved by the Public Works Director.

Requests meeting the minimum applicable criteria are then prioritized among other requests received for further study and/or implementation so that neighborhoods with the most critical need are addressed first. The need to prioritize projects also arises when the demand for pavement undulations exceeds available funding and/or staff time to facilitate the projects. The prioritization criteria will also be used to determine how the pavement undulation project may be funded. See attachment III.

Since most residential neighborhood traffic problems involve the speed of vehicles or the volume of vehicles, these criteria are weighted heavier in the ranking. Another factor that is considered is the average annual reported accidents that are determined to be speed related. Also, the impact traffic will have on a neighborhood depends upon the character of the street, the neighborhood make-up and the amount of pedestrian activity. Streets that have a greater percentage of fronting homes, schools, parks, or other neighborhood public facilities are impacted more than streets that are lined with back of lot treatments. Neighborhoods that have a higher number of pedestrian generators, such as parks, schools and other neighborhood public facilities, will be impacted greater than those neighborhoods without pedestrian generators. Due to the concentration of school-aged pedestrians and localized traffic congestion associated with elementary, middle, and high schools, these pedestrian generators are weighted double over that of other non-school pedestrian generators.

Once placed on the priority list, a preliminary neighborhood meeting will be scheduled and all of the residents and property owners within the impacted neighborhood boundary will be notified.

The purpose of this first meeting is to:

  1. Listen to the concerns of the residents
  2. Discuss the pavement undulation program and devices
  3. Investigate the potential funding scenarios.

This will primarily be a meeting, for staff to more fully determine the concerns of the residents as well as for the residents and property owners to learn of the pavement undulation program and its implications. This meeting is purposely held prior to the circulation of an officially recognized petition so that the residents are more educated about the process that they are being asked to support. At this meeting, it is reqAugust 30, 2006 working group be identified in order to coordinate future outreach efforts within the neighborhood.

Since pavement undulation devices will impact people and property in the neighborhood and the implementation tends to be costly, it is necessary to determine if there is adequate support for the process before continuing. Therefore, an official petition requesting initiation of the pavement undulation program must be submitted following the neighborhood meeting and must be signed by at least 67 percent of the households within the neighborhood boundary. The neighborhood captain and/or the neighborhood working group will need to coordinate this effort. Unless at least 67 percent of the households sign the petition, the request may not proceed. For the purposes of this program, a household is defined as any owned or rented living unit with its own street address, regardless of how many people live in each unit. Each household is represented by one signature.

Based on information gathered from the preliminary neighborhood meeting, staff will develop alternatives for implementation of the pavement undulation devices and their possibility for funding. Initial administrative costs, including staff time to collect and analyze data, prioritize requests, conduct neighborhood meetings, and design the pavement undulations, would ordinarily be covered under the normal Departmental operating budget.

The costs for construction, maintenance, and associated administration of the proposed pavement undulations may be funded under the County Public Works Capital Improvement Budget when funding is determined available or shared between the County and the affected households, when a voluntary cash advance program is proposed. The shared funding concept would proportion the shared costs between the County and the households in relation to the priority of the traffic problem. Since the prioritization criteria quantify the magnitude of the identified traffic problem, projects with higher prioritization scores would qualify for a greater percentage of available County funding as follows:

Points Proportion of County Funding
0 - 5
6 - 10
11 - 15
16 - 20
21 and above

Projects scoring 21 or more prioritization points would qualify for 100 percent County funding of the costs as funding becomes available. Lower scoring projects would only be able to obtain a County funding share after all higher scoring projects, especially those seeking a cost sharing plan, have received available funding.

The County will not directly collect funds from the affected households for the neighborhood share of a pavement undulation project that is determined eligible for a cost-sharing program. Rather the neighborhood may propose voluntary cash advancement for construction of the pavement undulations. The County must receive the full voluntary cash advancement amount determined for the neighborhood share prior to consideration for construction.

The cost-sharing/voluntary cash advancement scenario allows priority projects to move forward when insufficient County program funding is available. It also allows the neighborhood to be responsible and have a sense of ownership in the project.

The County will also not ordinarily undertake or require the formation of a district to collect funds for the pavement undulation project from the property owners of the affected neighborhood due to the disproportionate administrative costs and staff time.

At the appropriate time, and as the availability of staff time allows, all affected households and/or property owners within a petitioning neighborhood will be sent notification of a second neighborhood meeting to present the Public Works Staff's traffic analysis and the proposed alternatives for implementation of the pavement undulation devices as well as possible funding sources. The goal of the second meeting will be to develop a neighborhood understanding of the parameters of the problem and a consensus as to the preferred solution and exact method of funding. Any advance funding costs required for the pavement undulations will be split among the affected households. It may also be determined that the proposed pavement undulations are not a practical solution. A mail survey will be included with the notification of the meeting that must be returned to the County within four weeks of the meeting asking for each household's and/or property owner's choice for further action. Unless at least 67 percent of the households and/or property owners respond with a signed survey voting for the proposed pavement undulations and method of funding, the project will not proceed further.

Upon a consensus between the County and the neighborhood on the scope of the project and required funding has been determined. Once each fiscal year, after required advance funding has been received, the County Board of Supervisors would review the proposed neighborhood approved plans and allocate available funding towards any pre-determined County funding shares. After sufficient funding has been allocated, the CEQA process for environmental review of the project will be conducted. The County Board of Supervisors will review and consider all information prior to making a decision to approve or deny installation of the devices.

Following Board approval, plans and specifications will be prepared, followed by advertisement for construction, either as an independent bid or as part of larger contract. It is anticipated that construction would be completed within 3 months of the County Board of Supervisors approval.

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Butte County Public Works
Phone:    530.538.7681
Fax:        530.538.7171

Road Maintenance Division
Phone:    530.538.7606

Neal Road Recycling and Waste Facility
Phone:    530.345.4917
Fax:        530.645.1820

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Butte County Public Works
7 County Center Dr.
Oroville, CA 95965

Office Hours
Monday - Friday
7:30am to 4:00pm
Excludes Holidays

Neal Road Recycling and Waste Facility
1023 Neal Road
Paradise, CA 95969

Regular hours 7:00am to 4:00pm

Monday thru Sunday

New Year's Day, Easter, July 4th, Thanksgiving day, Christmas day: Closed

 Projects, RFPs, RFQs
Public Works

7 County Center Drive
Oroville, CA 95965

Dennis Schmidt, Director

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