Dust swirled up into the air as dirt shot out the back of a machine on Eureka Avenue in Lodi on Friday.
The sound of grinding screeched through the morning air as men shouted directions to one another.
A white mammoth of a truck pulled along the sidewalk on Eureka Avenue, crunching through old road to savor the taste of street momentarily before spewing it out the back of a long, rectangular contraption.
The dirt look pummeled and well-chewed. The machine scooted along, continuing to devour what once was a street where children rode bikes and cars drove to and fro.
The machine, called a cold milling machine, was grinding asphalt to help dig a trench along what was once a paved street.
A cold milling machine, also known as an asphalt grinder, crushes up old road to make way for new asphalt. The old road is recycled and used elsewhere.
According to project manager Jake Creger, the grinder's regurgitated bits of road and rock are being taken to the Lodi Grape Festival Grounds for a future project.
The grinder cuts about 4 inches of road out of the roadway that is being worked on, so that 4 new inches of asphalt can be put in.
In total, a typical day sees roughly 5,000 feet of road opened up, Creger added.
The machines, which cost anywhere from $5,000 to $6,000 a day to rent, can "do a lot" when they are at the peak of closing up road with new covering.
The machines are only used after the water mains are tested to make sure they run through clean water to houses, Creger said.
During the water main laying project, the machines will be used about 12 to 16 times to make sure road that was opened to lay the work for water mains is successfully closed up with new asphalt.
The project, which is part of the city's ongoing efforts to install water meters throughout Lodi, continues in the through the summer, and according to project manager Jake Creger, his teams are ahead of schedule.
Laying down water mains began back in early April, and while it is scheduled to end around the beginning of November, Creger said. He and his crews from Teichert Construction hope to get things done a little sooner.
"We actually hope to have all the water mains done by the end of August," he said.
Contact reporter Katie Nelson at firstname.lastname@example.org.