Private-sector construction companies help city and province fund research into roadwork

Fourteen construction-industry companies have joined the city and province in funding a University of Manitoba research program aimed at improving municipal infrastructure.

Five-year, $1M municipal-infrastructure research program kicks off at University of Manitoba

Civil engineering professor Ahmed Shalaby holds the municipal-infrastructure chair at the University of Manitoba. (Trevor Brine/CBC)

Fourteen construction-industry companies have joined the city and province in funding a University of Manitoba research program aimed at improving municipal infrastructure.

The city, province and private sector will spend $1 million over the next five years on the U of M's new municipal infrastructure chair. The position will be held by civil engineering professor Ahmed Shalaby.

The research is intended to demonstrate the science behind infrastructure decisions such as the materials used to pave roads. The work has the potential to reduce construction costs, Shalaby said Tuesday at a press conference at the U of M's engineering building.

The private-sector firms are contributing $255,000 to the research program, while the province is spending $500,000. The City of Winnipeg announced its $250,000 contribution in March, when the 2016 budget was presented at city hall.