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December 2008
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The Need for Good Highway Infrastructure: Part 1

As the term comes to a close here in Toronto (no I do not go to York, which is currently on strike) I am in the process of writing all my final papers. One of my classes is called Concrete Technology and Non-Destructive Testing and initially I thought the paper I was writing was not useful to my blog, but I’ve had a change of thoughts.

I’m putting together a paper on pre-cast elements for highway repair. It is a newer construction method to repair the aging highways in North America. Closing our highways for to  repair them  is not an option and I am reminded of that each time I drive the highways. It seems to be that there is not a large enough window of non-peak congestion to do construction; now instead we have super-congestion and congestion.

The trucking industry, and much of the goods moved in Canada, are dependant upon the highways system. Did you know that (thanks to the Canadian Trucking Alliance for these statistics):

  • over 80% of goods moved with in Canada are moved by trucks
  • As a whole, the trucking industry generated an estimated $67 billion in revenues in 2005
  • In 2006, the exports from Canada shipped by trucks totalled $185.8 billion (50.7% of total exports) down from $188.4 billion in 2005. Imports from the United States shipped by trucks amounted to $166 billion in 2006 (76.7% of total imports), up from $164.7 billion in 2005.
  • the GTA is trucking centre of Canada (with its easy connections to the US through Windsor and Niagara Falls)
  • The main interprovincial trucking flow was the Quebec–Ontario route (both directions), which accounted for $40.4 billion worth of commodities, or 28 per cent of the total interprovincial trade.
  • The busiest transborder trucking routes were Ontario–U.S. central region, Ontario–U.S. south region and Ontario–U.S. northeast region. Combined, they accounted for almost 80 per cent of the shipments

There is also the commuter side of things, which I will save for part two of this blog. But as this shows the need for a functioning highway system in Southern Ontario is paramount, so finding a efficient and effective way to repair them is necessary.