The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) spends only 7.6% of its paving dollars on concrete, as opposed to asphalt, and the Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the American Concrete Paving Association wants a bigger piece of the action.
Pitching the Commonwealth Transportation Board (CTB) Wednesday, Executive Director Robert R. Long Jr., outlined four “opportunities” for the state to stretch its transportation dollars.
- Consider the concrete alternative. Concrete is price competitive today on the basis of up-front costs, and even more advantageous when viewed on a life-cycle basis. Rt. 316 in Accomack County, built with concrete in 1940, will be undergoing only its third major repair in 2013.
- Use alternate design bids. Don’t specify asphalt only. Create a design alternative that uses concrete. A healthy two-pavement system creates more competition. Alternate bidding is used in 21 states to bring down costs.
- Balance the state’s “pavement portfolio.” When building a new road or highway, use a mix of asphalt and concrete so that different sections are due for maintenance in staggered intervals, say, one-third in five years, one-third in ten, and one-third in 15. That evens out the long-term maintenance costs.
- Utilize new pavement technologies. Take advantage of new techniques for patching old concrete pavement that can bring down costs.
Concluded Long: “Don’t be satisfied with the status quo.”