Wpg Free Press: City bets on asphalt for Waverley underpass
Discerning motorists driving past the Waverley Street rail underpass project site are doing double-takes.
If it appears the road is being constructed using asphalt only — the soft, pliable asphalt every Winnipeg driver knows too well is prone to ruts, potholes and constant rebuilding — they’re not mistaken….
Ahmed Shalaby, a University of Manitoba professor of civil engineering who specializes in pavement design and highway materials, said asphalt has gotten a bad rap when it comes to road building, adding his work shows it can be just as durable and strong as concrete.
“Traditionally, Winnipeg has built most of its road network using concrete pavement only, but that is not common in other municipalities,” Shalaby said. “Asphalt and concrete are equivalent. They can both be designed to carry the load.
“Typically, concrete is preferred in very high-volume traffic and very high volume of truck traffic. But there are many asphalt roads and even in that perform just as good — it all depends on how it is designed and placed.”