Mar 23, 2023 - News

Pothole problems less severe in Metro Detroit this year

Illustration of a construction crane hook with a downward arrow instead of a hook.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Your pothole opinions probably rest on whether your car hit a damage-inducing road crater this winter.

  • But government data shows this season has been milder than last.

State of play: Detroit, Oakland and Macomb counties are all seeing fewer reported potholes this year than in 2022.

Why it matters: Potholes are dangerous, costly and seemingly a never-ending concern in our metro.

By the numbers: Detroit received 429 pothole complaints through its Improve Detroit app from January to March 13 this year, compared to 527 in the same timeframe last year.

  • The Oakland County Road Commission received 758 pothole complaints from January to March 20 — about a 60% decrease from 1,894 last year.
  • And Macomb County has seen a drastic decrease in road maintenance requests: 488 from January to March 20 this year compared to 1,255 over that time in 2022.

What they're saying: "We've had a relatively mild winter which has resulted in fewer potholes forming on the roads this year," Macomb County roads department director Bryan Santo tells Axios.

The big picture: The 2022-23 winter was Detroit's seventh-warmest on record, with the average temperature from December-February of 33°F — 11° warmer than in 1970.


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