I read an interesting article yesterday: “Concrete industry blasts asphalt in ad campaign.” The story itself wasn’t interesting, but the timing was.
On Saturday evening, I was leaving Augsburg college and decided to take 94 to 35E so I could stop at Kowalski’s in Eagan on my way home and get some sushi from my favorite sushi guy, Dragon. Yeah, that is his name, or at least what his nametag says.
Anyway, as I headed east on 94, I noticed a lot of cracks in the new asphalt that was just installed last summer. Not just a crack here and there, but cracks all over the place. It occurred to me that after next winter’s thaw, potholes will be back on 94. That launched me into a flashback to the giant pothole I hit on 94 last spring. It was awful, oh the humanity!
Why are there already cracks in the road? It isn’t even a year old. Isn’t there some sort of warranty? How much did it cost us to install that road that is already deteriorating after 9 months?
This is a country that launches functioning satellites, creates energy out of sunlight and wind, builds skyscrapers that withstand earthquakes, designs planes that evade radar and has kids who can build elaborate robots, and we can’t install a frickin’ road that lasts through a winter? What is going in Minnesota?
I don’t know if concrete is the answer, but we need to stop solving our problems with quick fixes and easy solutions. We need to start thinking about the future. That article says MnDOT was awarded a “string of national awards” for its asphalt pavements because of their longevity. What the heck did they do differently on 94 then?