Just a few years after new asphalt was put down for a freeway project in Ashland, the Oregon Department of Transportation plans to remove and replace it.




ODOT will spend about $1 million for a 3.5-mile section of Interstate 5 between exits 11 and 14. The section of road, paved in 2002, has not held up to traffic in icy conditions.




"That area sees heavy use during the wintertime from vehicles that are chained up," said Gary Leaming, project information coordinator for ODOT.




The southbound lanes, not including the shoulders, will be repaved in July or August. The job will be done one lane at a time and at night and is expected to last two weeks.




The type of asphalt that was used is called "F mix," he said.




"It's an open-graded mix that allows water to drain and it reduces spray from tires," said Leaming. But car and truck chains are able to grab the rocks in the mix and pop them out, resulting in severe rutting. He said ODOT will replace it with a dense mix.




"As a rule the state is getting away from using F mix where chains are required," he said. He said even though ODOT has experience paving roads where chains are used, this particular section of I-5 gets more wear than a normal mountain highway gets.




The money will come from a federal emergency maintenance fund for interstate roads.




I-5 between the south Ashland interchange and the south Medford interchange was repaved in two separate projects. The first in 2002 was from exit 11 to the north Ashland interchange (exit 19). The second was in 2005-06 from the north Ashland interchange (exit 19) to just south of the current construction at the south Medford interchange (exit 27).