Ever notice that the curbs in the Junction are disappearing with the rising levels of road paving material and the build up every time they do remedial road surface work.
For a long time the city ripped up the old road surface and laid down new underlayment and asphalt.
Most Junction streets have not been resurfaced in this manner for over 2 decades, they have had the surface ground and overlaid with a thin liquid re-coating. This Slurry Seal it is a mixture of emulsion, aggregate, water and mineral filler applied to an asphalt surface, but now, in most cases this seal usefulness has been worn away.
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Many curbs are in such low height streets that a car or truck can simply roll over the curb with little speed.
How curbs lead to greater safety.
While most curbs are psychological deterrent to drivers than a barrier to vehicles. Cars are only redirected at low speeds and shallow glancing angles.
It does make a difference in traffic speeds. A recent study found that streets with curbs and sidewalks have average speeds 7 mph less than similar roads without curbs or sidewalks. To put this into perspective, at 25 mph, a pedestrian has an 80% chance of surviving getting hit by a car. At 35 mph, it’s 50%. At 45 mph, the chances of living are only 20%. Slowing traffic down dramatically increases safety.
from wikipedia …
Curbs may fulfill any or several of a number of functions. They separate the road from the roadside, discouraging drivers from parking or driving on sidewalks and lawns. They also provide structural support to the pavement edge. Curbs can be used to channel runoff waterfrom rain, or melted snow and ice into storm drains. There is also an aesthetic aspect, in that curbs look formal and “finished”.
Since curbs add to the cost of a road, they are generally limited to urban and suburban areas, and are rarely found in rural areas except where certain drainage conditions (such as mountains or culverts) make them necessary. Curbs are not universally used, however, even in urban settings (see living street).