The City of Wilmington is reevaluating their brick streets policy. If our historic brick streets are important to you, please take the City’s survey (below) and let them know you would like them to preserve, uncover and repair our brick streets using historic brick.
The arguments for preserving historic brick streets are both sentimental and economic. Brick streets, with their beauty and historic accuracy, are part of the package that fuels our multi-million dollar heritage tourism industry. They contribute to higher property values in historic neighborhoods, stay cooler than heat-radiating asphalt and work to calm traffic, making these areas safer for both pedestrian and vehicular traffic. Brick streets are also a good long term investment. Unlike asphalt streets, brick streets can go decades without repairs. They don’t crack or develop pot holes like their asphalt counterparts. When repairs are needed, such as for utility work, they can be done less invasively, making the job easier and less expensive than when done on an asphalt street. Additionally, by allowing rainwater between the bricks, brick streets reduce the volume that flows in to the storm sewer to be processed.
Historic brick street restoration does carry a higher upfront cost than asphalt streets. Historic Wilmington Foundation feels the drastically reduced long-term maintenance cost, tourism appeal and quality of life benefits more than out-weigh this initial investment.
When reading the City’s survey, you may find it seems to contradict itself at times. We suggest first reading through the entire 14 question survey to help ensure consistency of your responses, and, in the interest of clarity, providing additional feedback by submitting comments. We encourage you to cite information found in this email.
The City’s brick street survey can be found HERE.
It will be active only through mid-January. Please complete it soon.
Thank you for your help in saving our City’s historic treasures!