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Asphalt pavements in residential developments and public spaces

28 of October '20

Modern and environmentally friendly asphalt p
avements, thanks to their functional properties - unrivaled evenness, ability to dampen noise or drain excess water - are very popular not only on roads, but also in public spaces around the world.

Architects and builders are taking advantage of asphalt's qualities by skillfully incorporating it into their surroundings, in squares, parking lots, parks, sidewalks and bike paths. When designing the surface of a road, parking lot, sidewalk or bicycle path, it is worth answering the question: what should characterize a good surface?

It goes without saying that it should, first of all, be safe and comfortable for the user, that is, even and rough, providing the ability to move without the risk of slipping, regardless of weather conditions and the method of movement - by wheeled vehicle, on foot in high heels, in a wheelchair or on crutches. The ability to reduce noise and water permeability are also very important. From the point of view of the engineer and architect, the pavement should additionally be durable, stable and aesthetically pleasing.

Modern asphalt technologies meet all these challenges. At the same time, they are completely natural, environmentally friendly, 100% recyclable, and have a lower carbon footprint (CF) than other technologies. They therefore fit perfectly into the Green Deal policy.

Zug (Switzerland). Universal asphalt pavement for all users

Photo: © Lotos Asphalt

A great asset of asphalt pavements is their evenness

The evenness of pavements is of great importance not only for the comfort of movement, but also for safety and noise generated by vehicles. Asphalt pavements laid in a continuous and mechanized manner provide excellent evenness. Evenness is aided by the flexibility of mineral and asphalt mixtures (mma), in which the decisive role is played by asphalt binder, which, despite its content of only 5-6% in mma, allows the aggregate grains to be permanently bound into the desired form.

Unevenness reduces comfort and safety. Many times you can see women in high heels , who step off sidewalks, such as granite pavers onto an asphalt street to ease their passage. Cyclists behave similarly, staying on the asphalt roadway, where the road for bicycles is made of concrete blocks.

Asphalt paving has advantages over granite and concrete pavers and flagstones. The asphalt road is an ideal surface for the very popular small-wheeled vehicles such as scooters, referred to as personal transportation equipment (UTO).

Park avenues in Slupsk

Photo: © Lotos Asphalt

Roads and sidewalks are built to last for decades, so it makes sense to take the latest trends into account when choosing a material.

An important aspect when designing roads in a built-up area is noise reduction. The noise caused by driving on an uneven road, such as a cobblestone road, is very inconvenient and harmful to health. It is not without reason that signs are erected in residential areas with such surfaces, saying "Driver, drive very slowly! Don't make a bang on the pavement! Thank you - Residents".

Asphalt pavements are quieter than cobblestone and classic cement concrete, and in addition, with the use of special mixtures, they have great potential for noise attenuation. The quietest asphalt roads allow noise reduction of 3-8 dB on average compared to the quietest roads using other technologies.

Basel (Switzerland). Asphalt pavement in the historic center, providing comfortable and safe movement on sloping terrain

Photo: © Lotos Asphalt

From the point of view of road noise generation by vehicles, the material, manufacturing technology and texture of the pavement wearing course are of decisive importance. An effective technology that both reduces noise and improves anti-skid properties is porous asphalt. Porous, permeable asphalt pavements, thanks to a system of channels, in addition to reducing noise, offset the adverse effects of heavy rainfall, preventing the formation of stagnant water and restoring or even improving the hydrology of the area.

With flexible asphalts modified with polymers and rubber - MODBIT, MODBIT HiMA or MODBIT CR - durable and quiet pavements can be achieved.

Agnieszka Kędzierska

Lotos Asphalt

For more information, visit the company's Lotos Asfalt page on the A&B portal.

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