with research contributed by Patti Kitching & OPAL Research. Photo and map credit T.Vincent
Since March 2012, when Walker Industries made public its proposal for creating Ontario’s largest landfill in the Carmeuse Lime quarry in Zorra Township, local residents have been asking: Who is Walker Industries? What do we know of this private corporation? Has it already done work in Oxford County?
OPAL Alliance has determined that Walker Industries has been given contracts for public works in Oxford County in past years.
The most recent contract known to OPAL was given to Walker Industries by Zorra Township in February, 2012.
The contract, valued at over $308,000, was for paving the 33rd Line between Road 62 and 68, in accordance with Zorra Township Council’s 2010 - 2014 Project Expectations document, listing “major constructions [sic] projects planned for 2011 - 2015.”
Although the original work stipulated a “Hot Mix Pave”, Zorra Township ultimately chose another method.
“Many factors go into the paving of roads. These include traffic counts, connectivity between areas, maintenance requirements, etc. We have a tender process for all paving projects. For the 33rd Line, we are trying a new process using only recycled asphalt as there is current availability of this product from the widening of Highway 401 between Woodstock and Drumbo,” says Aden Corcoran, Director of Public Works, Township of Zorra. “This is a cheaper alternative than Hot Mix Paving.”
Aden confirmed that one company bid on the public project: Norjohn Limited.
Norjohn Limited is a division of Walker Industries.
OPAL Alliance’s research indicates that Walker/Norjohn is the only company within reasonable travel distance equipped to handle the new recycled asphalt process.
On or around June 21, 2012, Norjohn began work on the paving of the 33rd Line, which appears to be a frequently used thoroughfare. Aden says, “A traffic count in 2011 showed 1178 vehicles on this road” per day.
OPAL Alliance took some photos on June 21, 2012 of Walker Industries/Norjohn trucks on the job.
This map indicates the route being newly paved by Walker Industries/Norjohn for Zorra Township.
As stated on Walker Industries’ website, www.walkerind.com/norjohn:
“Walker Industries is divided into three main divisions in which all companies fall under: Walker Aggregates Inc.; Norjohn Limited; and Walker Environmental Group.”
Walker Industries defines Norjohn as: “Manufacturers of custom formulated emulsions for infrastructure and building product applications….Norjohn Limited offers a wide selection of asphalt based emulsions and cutbacks for a variety of market applications. Asphalt products may be custom formulated, for any industrial application, or manufactured to OPSS, ASTM or CGSB specifications. For over 30 years Norjohn has been on the leading edge of asphalt technology.”