For most of us, roads are long stretches of pavement that serpentine through the countryside and keep our cities organized in neat grids. But – as with anything – there’s a lot more going on beneath the surface.
Across the earth, the composition and compactness of the ground varies wildly:
- In and between municipalities, asphalt is laid atop the infrastructure that keeps urban areas clean and connected.
- In rural areas, where infrastructure is much less prevalent, gravel and dirt roads are prone to deterioration.
- In remote areas, ground conditions can be so wet, unstable, or impassable — that it may be a challenge to build a road of any type in the first place.
Regardless of how and where a road is constructed — whether it’s a temporary access road to service oil and gas activities, or a permanent, paved residential road — all roads are in a constant cycle of being built, maintained, repaired, and replaced… and this is no cheap endeavour.
The cost of maintaining Canada’s public roadways
Take, for example, the federal government’s recent announcement to allocate $159 million for the improvement of approximately 9.4 kilometres of highway in British Columbia’s interior region.
This is a huge financial commitment for a relatively small section of road — not to mention the enormous quantities of finite resources required. And, we haven’t even touched on the carbon emissions that could be released from the conventional roadbuilding techniques typically employed in this type of project.
When you consider that there are more than one million kilometres of roads in Canada that will all require maintenance, repairs, and replacement at some point — the importance of increasing our roads’ quality and longevity becomes crystal clear.
So, how can we continue to evolve our construction methods so roads last longer, while minimizing the environmental impact on the land our roads pass through?
At Paradox, we've been developing solutions that address this issue since 2009. Our matting and Tough Cell® solutions offer benefits that far surpass those of conventional road construction. We engineer roads that last up to 20 years before needing to be replaced, and for each stretch of road we build, we can provide true measurements of carbon savings.