By Simon SmithHow much gravel do you need?
If you live in a flat, well-watered area and need about 1.3 tonnes of gravel a day to get through your driveway, you’re looking at a daily bill of around $5.40, according to the Australian Road and Transport Association (ARTA).
But the gravel calculator on the ARTA website can help you get a rough idea of how much gravel you need.
Read moreWhat is the gravel needed for?
The ARTA has been compiling gravel data since 2000 and, like most Australian organisations, relies on the industry to supply data on the cost of gravel, or how much it costs to build roads.
Road building, for instance, includes all the work that goes into the construction of the road.
However, gravel does not need to be laid down, as roads are built in a wide variety of materials and there are many different types of gravel that can be used.
It’s a complicated question to answer, but it’s worth considering the ARMA’s calculations to get a sense of how big a problem roads can be when it comes to the supply of gravel.
What are the main reasons why we need gravel?
Roads are built with gravel because it is cheaper to use and harder to break down, according the ARSA.
This makes it more cost-effective to dig a road and build a bridge, or to replace one damaged by a storm.
The gravel calculator above only includes road construction costs, not the costs of replacement roads, or the cost to replace an existing road.
But this doesn’t mean the gravel is not a problem.
If you want to replace your road, you’ll need a gravel supply, and there will be lots of costs involved.
You’ll need gravel for:Road bridges, ramps, culverts, culvert drains and drainage ditch systemsRoad fencesRoad foundations (including roads, footpaths and cycle tracks)Roads that are over 100 years oldRoads for the construction industry and infrastructure (including bridges, road and bridge maintenance)Road signsRoad signs and markings for the purpose of marking a path in the roadWhere do we get our gravel?
According to the ARPA, Australia needs about 1,200 tonnes of road gravel a year.
These can be sourced from a variety of sources including:Roads, tunnels and culvertsRoads and bridgesConstruction equipmentMixed-use development (including commercial buildings and residential properties)Road and bridge foundationsRoads where there is a significant number of peopleRoads used to be private propertyRoads which have been used by other roadsThe ARMA calculates the amount of gravel in each individual road as follows:A road with about 250,000 people will need 1,300 tonnes of the gravel to build its roads, while a road with 10,000 to 15,000 would need 1.7 tonnes.
A road with 20,000 or more people will require 4.3, while roads with less than 10,,000 will require 2.5 tonnes.
There are also factors that can impact the supply, such as:The type of road – roads with straight, steep and narrow roads are more likely to require gravel than those with curves.
Roads with more than one road crossing – roads which have only one road running through them will need less gravel than roads with multiple roads running through.
Road signs on buildings or other buildings that are built on the same land are not counted.
The ARPA also provides figures on the costs to dig up roads and the cost for roads to be replaced.
Road maintenance costsThe ARSA estimates the average annual cost of repairing a road to be $1.10 per kilometre, or $0.13 for every $10,000 of road damage.
Road repairs are generally carried out on an average of two to three times a year, depending on the road and the area.
This can result in costs being over $10 million, and could increase if roads are not maintained properly.
A major cost that could increase is the cost incurred to replace a road, including the cost from road building.
Road construction and maintenance costs are usually passed on to road users.
The ARSA says that this could amount to $7 billion to $10 billion a year in road repairs.
Road resurfacingThe ARBA estimates the cost per kilometres of resurfacing road to cover costs to repair the road, as well as other costs such as drainage and the maintenance of the infrastructure on the new road.
The cost to resurface roads can also be passed on if the road is in need of replacement.
If the road has been in need the cost could be passed onto the owner of the land on which the road sits.
The owner could then have to pay the cost if they don’t get the resurfacing done.
The costs of resurging road are passed on from one owner to the next.
If a road is not resurfaced in the next five years, it could be covered by the owner if they are not able