The Public Works Department is responsible for highways, parks and open space areas, sewage collection system and pump stations.
Franconia Township has 48 miles of Township-maintained roadways and 26 miles of State highways maintained by PennDOT. The Department has numerous responsibilities, including taking care of potholes, all types of signage, signalization, street painting, storm drainage, ditch cleaning, shoulder mowing, crack sealing, surface treatments, skin patching, overlays, reconstruction and of course, snow removal.
Franconia is a bit more unusual than most highway departments because we still do all of our own work. We do a lot of storm drainage along existing roadways and continually work at improving our infrastructure on existing roadways.
When development comes into an area, we work at improving the surrounding areas in order to better handle the additional traffic. Our own crews do the reconstruction projects that usually involve storm drainage, curbing, excavation, rebuilding and if necessary, sidewalks.
Doing the work "in-house" gives us the opportunity to work more closely with the property owner so that everyone is happy with the finished product.
Preventative maintenance is a priority in Franconia Township. The most cost effective way of having a good, safe, pothole-free road to travel on is to keep water from penetrating the subbase of our highway system, so we do all we can to keep water off the roadways with storm drainage and wide shoulders with ditches. We also do a lot of crack sealing and chip sealing every year to keep the water from penetrating the road surface and causing premature failure and unnecessary potholes.
Managing snow and ice are a winter priority in Franconia Township. We were one of the first municipalities in Montgomery County to sign on with PennDOT and go under contract for snow removal on their roadways, having signed with them in 1972.
We felt that we could do a much better job of serving the public by taking care of all the roadways during a snowstorm in an efficient, organized manner, following a system that takes care of all roads in a practical sequence starting with the main thoroughfares, working into the lower volume through-roads and ending up in developments.
Snow and ice is a condition that affects each one of us at the same time. We can't be everywhere immediately, but we work very hard at keeping the roads passable through the storm. We ask that each one of our residents help us accomplish our tasks most efficiently by doing their part. Here’s how:
Safety Tips for Winter
Be especially careful after a cold rain or in the late afternoon when we may have had some snow melt. Black Ice is deceiving and extremely treacherous. When the temperature falls, it happens everywhere at the same time and becomes extremely slippery immediately.
- If you are at work and it starts to snow, be willing to stay awhile longer so you don't get caught in the mass exit. We need to get around before you to put the salt down so everyone can keep moving. We get caught in the same traffic that you are in and the whole process slows down.
- When snow is forecast, keep your cars out of the roadways and park them in your driveways. This gives us a chance to do a much better job of cleaning the roads and it will eliminate the need of cleaning the snow out from around your car after we have plowed it in. It also gives you less driveway to clean because it never snows under the car!
- Give the plow truck the right of way, staying far enough away from it so that you don't get caught in one of the many blind spots. The driver needs a lot more room than you realize in maneuvering the equipment.
- When cleaning sidewalks and driveways, always throw the snow back into your yard so you won't have to move it again. If it goes into the street, we will push it right back to you and you'll have to move it again.
- If you live on a street that is wider than one car, wait until we make the second or third pass before cleaning out your driveway entrance. We always take the snow back to the curb line whenever possible.
- Remember, snow emergencies mean all vehicles are prohibited from parking on any Township street and may be towed at your expense. We don't want to have to do that.
Thank you for your help in keeping our roads safe and travelable. We can all work together to have the cleanest roads in the community.
Superintendent of Highways
Direct any concerns to either the Township office or to Paul Nice at the Highway Department. (215) 723-1153.