The asphalt pavement industry is a leader in the construction and maintenance of America’s road and highway transportation network. While asphalt pavements serve a national market, they are built by people who live and work in the areas that they serve. Asphalt jobs truly are Main Street jobs that cannot be outsourced overseas. Asphalt jobs are also green jobs; asphalt is America’s most reused and recycled material, and virtually every worker in the industry is involved in reuse and recycling in some way. The asphalt pavement industry is proud to support the people who rely on our country’s infrastructure as well as those who have made the industry a career choice.
Asphalt contractors are Virginia’s paving industry. Asphalt contractors have physical locations across the Commonwealth of Virginia – from the mountains of southwest Virginia to the Eastern Shore. Virginia’s asphalt industry has 32 different companies with 122 plants. These companies employ over 6,500 people with a 2011 combined salary of $238 million. In addition, asphalt companies contract another 2,000 Virginians to haul material to projects worth over $150 million. These numbers do not include the employees of companies who support the asphalt industry (i.e., equipment suppliers, office supplies, lab supplies, etc.) or who benefit from the patronage of asphalt contractor employees. In all, asphalt contractors through salaries, contracts and asset investments contribute nearly $1 Billion to the Virginia economy each year.
With one-third of our nation’s infrastructure in poor condition and construction unemployment at twice the national rate, there has been much debate about highway funding as a stimulus for job creation. Like all economic debates, this one involves many variables and dynamic assumptions that can make it difficult to accurately measure the true impacts. A new white paper from the Asphalt Pavement Alliance breaks down the industry by the numbers, to show who we are and to highlight the important role workers in the asphalt and contributing industries play in the lives of all Americans.
The workers who are most visible to the public are paving crews. These workers, however, are only a small part of the equation. An asphalt road could not be constructed without civil engineers, technologists, researchers, raw material suppliers, asphalt mix producers, truck drivers, aggregate producers, equipment manufacturing workers, construction equipment distributors, and many others who work behind the scenes. The white paper entitled Jobs in the Asphalt Pavement Industry: A Profile of the Men and Women Who Build Our Nation’s Infrastructure highlights the varied jobs that are a part of asphalt road construction and the collective impact that the industry has on the rest of the economy. To view or download a copy, click here.