July 23, 2009

Piquing interest in perpetual pavement

Construction industry members and municipal engineers from across Ontario gathered in Guelph July 8 for a seminar and demonstration on the advantages of perpetual pavement.

As its name suggests, perpetual pavement is asphalt pavement that, through the use of multiple layers, is designed to last longer than 50 years without requiring major structural rehabilitation, only periodic resurfacing of the top layer every 20 years or so.

This makes it a low-maintenance and cost-effective approach to road building, effectively eliminating the need for total pavement reconstruction.

The Ministry of Transportation is currently incorporating perpetual pavement along a 15 kilometre test section of Highway 401 near Woodstock.

The $105-million project incorporates three different designs: a conventional design with 300 mm of hot mix and two perpetual pavement designs with 420 mm of hot mix (with and without an asphalt rich bottom layer).

Reed Construction Data reporter Vince Versace spoke with Ontario Hot Mix Producers Association CEO Mike O’Connor about perpetual pavement and the challenges in getting buy-in from municipalities around the province.

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