Concrete highways have frequently been criticized because of the repetitive "thump" caused by crossing transverse joints. Has any thought ever been given to staggering these joints in lanes so that a vehicle rides with each set of wheels passing over the joints alternately? Surely at average speeds proper spacing would cancel the effect.
This has been considered. However, aside from the practical disadvantage--the method would probably involve the laying of narrower slabs, possibly three lanes for a two-lane highway--there is also a design problem. With staggered joints it was found that cracking developed in the slab adjacent to the transverse joint in the next. This is caused by friction between adjacent slabs. Placing joints in line, on the other hand, means that adjacent slabs can contract and expand together. We should, however, emphasize that this criticism is really no longer valid today. With modern saw-cut joints and proper filling there should be no unevenness of the pavement.