2021 Street Painting Update

2021 Street Painting Update
Posted on 08/27/2021
Freshly Painted Left Turn ArrowIt's a dark and rainy night. You are driving down the road, and your headlights don't seem to be helping at all. Where are those painted lines?

Here in the City of Pullman, we refresh the painted portions of city-maintained streets annually. Typically, the painting begins in spring, after the pavement temperature is consistently above 50 degrees, and continues until complete in mid-to-late summer. However, a paint shortage has caused delays to the planned painting schedule.

The current road paint supply shortage is another example of the adverse effects the pandemic has had on so many industries. Damage to factories due to extreme winter storms earlier this year in the southern United States, along with COVID-19 restrictions and closures have affected the production of the raw materials used to produce specialized road paint. The shortage of traffic paint is an industry-wide issue affecting cities across the nation.

During the past several months, city staff worked with local paint suppliers, and, through that effort, the city was able to place an order in mid-June for 500-gallons of traffic paint. On August 11, the city received the paint, and maintenance staff resumed painting. Crosswalks, directional arrows, center and fog line striping, and yellow curbing are all slated to be addressed in the coming weeks. When asked if there is enough paint to complete the annual project, Maintenance Supervisor Justin Cohee responded, "It is going to very close."

Staff will be monitoring the availability of traffic paint over the next several months to get in front of potential impacts to the 2022 traffic painting season. "I am appreciative of the effort of our staff to work through this issue. A lot of legwork went into finding a source for the paint. Overcoming this situation is an excellent example of the partnership we have with our local business community. Not only did they find a local source, but they also maintained fiscal responsibility and avoided price gouging. " stated Maintenance and Operations Superintendent Art Garro. Garro continued, "I also appreciate the patience of our community stakeholders as crews work to complete the painting."

We wish you safe travels as our crews work to ensure strong infrastructure for a safe and thriving community!