“Five Minutes” with James Walker, Transport for NSW

Q. Can you share with the Australian Society for Concrete Pavements some perspectives on the advantages of concrete pavements over asphalt?

There are several reasons why concrete highway pavements are a better choice than asphalt pavements.  Firstly, concrete pavements have a longer lifespan than asphalt pavements. While asphalt pavements typically last for around 20 years, concrete pavements can last for up to 40 years or more. This means that concrete pavements require less frequent maintenance and replacement, leading to cost savings in the long run.

Secondly, concrete pavements are more durable and less susceptible to damage from heavy traffic, extreme weather conditions, and chemicals. Concrete pavements are also more resistant to rutting, potholes, and other forms of distress, which can cause safety hazards for drivers.

Thirdly, concrete pavements are more environmentally friendly than asphalt pavements. Concrete production has a lower carbon footprint than asphalt production, and concrete pavements can be made with recycled materials such as fly ash and slag, further reducing their environmental impact.

Fourthly, concrete pavements offer better visibility in wet weather conditions, as they reflect more light than asphalt pavements. This makes it easier for drivers to see the road markings and other traffic signs, reducing the risk of accidents.

Finally, concrete pavements offer better ride quality than asphalt pavements, providing a smoother and quieter driving experience. This can lead to increased comfort for drivers and passengers and may also reduce fatigue and stress.

In conclusion, concrete highway pavements offer several advantages over asphalt pavements in terms of durability, environmental impact, safety, and ride quality. While they may require a higher initial investment, their longer lifespan and reduced maintenance needs make them a more cost-effective choice in the long run.”

*James Walker, Project Development Manager for TFNSW

James is passionate about all things concrete, family, smoking/bbq and whisky! A Civil Engineer, born and raised in regional NSW. After being thrown into the deep end of the concrete pavements world (Kariong to Somersby), James continues to lead major road infrastructure projects as part of the Regional Infrastructure Development team in Newcastle. James is a Director on the Australian Society for Concrete Pavements — National Executive.


Back to News