June 26, 2012
New alternative bid criteria for some Ontario Ministry of Transportation pavements will not impact OHMPA work
A recent decision by the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) to extend its alternative bid criteria for some non-freeway and lower volume freeway pavements will not affect the majority of work done by the Ontario Hot Mix Producers Association (OHMPA), says its technical director.
The criteria will allow bidders to submit a bid to construct either a hot mix asphalt or concrete pavement on certain projects.
MTO has a policy to only look at the concrete option when certain truck volume is met.
This criteria only affects new construction, not rebuilding roads, said OHMPA technical director Sandy Brown, adding that 90 per cent of what OHMPA members do is resurfacing roads.
The MTO said recent developments in technology and changes in materials costs have made concrete and asphalt more cost-competitive.
The Ready Mix Concrete Association of Ontario said this would make concrete more of a consideration for municipalities.
There are not many municipalities that this would apply to, said Brown since many simply do not have the traffic.
“Really, even from a municipality’s perspective, the alternative bid concept only fits for high-traffic roads,” he said.
Brown pointed to MTO’s alternative bid language and that it’s a surfacing directive for high traffic routes.
“It’s based on a certain level of traffic and talking to the five MTO regions around Ontario, only Central Region is likely to have any roadways that are affected by the new directive because they have the traffic.”
Concrete pavement is being lauded as a sustainable but Brown argues that asphalt cement is probably the most sustainable material in North America.
“Asphalt pavement is 100 per cent recyclable and 80 per cent is recycled back into exactly what it was to begin with, new hot mix pavements,” he explained.
“It’s recycled more than any other material, paper, glass or steel,” added Brown. “This is the key to the sustainability of asphalt pavement…it means you don’t have to transport as much new material to make new hot mix pavement.”
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