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Potholes Represent a Concrete Opportunity

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It is that time of year, again - Pothole Season. Every year at this time, we hear motorists complaining about the deteriorating conditions of their streets and roads. And every year, we hear the DOT's and other public officials lamenting how they are doing everything they can to try to fix the problem, but how limited they are in funding. According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, this year the City of Chicago has already patched over 250,000 potholes (that’s up about 100,000 over last year), spending 1/3 of its annual $9.2 million pothole budget. Last year, Michigan spent about $8.8 million on pothole repair. This year, the estimates are somewhere between $13 million to $18 million! The toll that potholes extol is not just on roadway budgets. The Independent Insurance Agents of America (IIAA) estimates that about 500,000 auto insurance claims are filed annually, resulting in payouts of nearly 4.8 billion (that’s billion with a "b") dollars!

"The problems caused by potholes are evident," says NRMCA Senior National Resource Director Phil Kresge. "As an industry, we have a responsibility to inform the public and transportation officials that concrete is the solution to their potholes woes. The negative financial impact from potholes can be significantly reduced over time if a Balanced Paving Program is adopted - just one of the benefits of rigid pavements compared to flexible. We should also point out that concrete overlays of asphalt roads are an efficient approach where the road problems go beyond just random potholes." 

As reported in last week’s E-NEWS, NRMCA Senior National Resource Director Doug O’Neill recently attended a Town Board meeting in Western New York with a local NRMCA Producer member that was proposing a concrete fix to the severe deterioration of a local roadway. O’Neill reported that it was quite clear that the attendees at these meetings, both the residents and the Board members, know nothing about concrete and have the same pre-conceived notions about concrete. But he also noted that are they willing to listen, since their problems are reaching critical mass.

To take advantage of this situation, NRMCA advises our State Affiliates and members to reach out to every Town/City/Village Board and offer up "Concrete" Solutions to their pothole problems. Additionally, NRMCA members should reach out within their own towns to get an audience with these boards. Also, promoters should follow up with local reporters, based on their coverage of pothole problems and to bring the issue to the attention of agency and elected officials where SLR advocacy is being considered or is underway. 

For more information on SLR Promotion and Advocacy, contact Phil Kresge at

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