Group Holding Contest for Worst Road in Maine

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(NECN: Amy Sinclair) - Winter may be over, but it left a little something behind: Potholes.

The Maine Better Transportation Association is calling attention to the state's prolific pothole problem through a contest and prize money.
There's plenty of road rage to go around this spring.

Brent Crisci went into a lengthy rant about the state of Mt. Vernon Avenue, where his business is located.

"They're not even potholes. I don't know what the geological term is for them. They're craters! Craters that will destroy your car," he said.

And in fact, there was a shiny hubcap laying right across the street next to an 8 inch deep hole, half-filled with water. The MBTA is hoping to channel the public's ire into activism with their "Worst Road In Maine Contest."

They're asking the public to snap of photo of the road they love to hate, and send it to FixMaineRoads.org along with a short description of why that road is simply the worst.

"We're doing it to raise awareness," said Marie Fuentes, MBTA Executive Director. "We feel we're under investing in our roads and we hope this will educate people that there are real road needs all over the state."

The winner will receive $296, which is what the MBTA says is the average amount a Maine motorist will spend on car repairs caused by rough roads.

The winter weather isn't the only reason the state's corridors are so pock marked.

Maine has 24,000 miles of public roadway, more than any other New England state, and with a population of 1.3 million, there's not a lot of extra revenue to make repairs.
But the MBTA argues that not investing in roads is actually more costly because of car repair bills and countless lost economic opportunities.

Crisci's karate studio is on Mt. Vernon Avenue.

"I know it's costing me business, said Crisci. "People don't want to travel this road so they're not seeing my business, they're not seeing my signage."

The Maine Department of Transportation says Mt. Vernon Avenue is in fact sheduled for a major overhaul in 2015. Until then, Crisci will be on the side of the road, raging.

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