Paving With Asphalt – It’s Been Around Longer Than You Think
Since the first recorded use of asphalt for paving roads in Babylon as early as 625 BC, it has come a long way to become the most popular paving material with huge economic and ecological benefits to humanity around the world. Most people take for granted what a valuable resource asphalt is when in fact it is the primary material used to pave more than 95 percent of the highways and roads in the US!
Asphalt is the most preferred paving material because it is cheap, highly recyclable, and does not pollute the air or the environment. Pathways, roads, parking locations, and highways paved with this material are smooth and comfortable to ride on because of asphalt’s noise reduction properties. They are durable, and provide good traction, which makes them safe. Emerging technologies and applications of asphalt paving is proof enough that it will continue being a vital element of the future of humanity.
Paving – 5 Surprising Facts
Here are five facts you probably didn’t know about asphalt.
1. It is 100% natural
Asphalt is a naturally occurring material that is found in asphalt lakes or as rock asphalt (a mixture of asphalt, rock, and sand). It gets its name from the black, viscous, and sticky liquid also known as bitumen. It is typically mixed with mineral aggregate then laid and compacted on a subgrade foundation and a base of crushed stone to create the smooth and durable paved surfaces we drive and walk on.
2. It saves us a lot of money
Asphalt is a very economic paving material, and it is not just because it is highly recyclable, but also because it builds highly durable surfaces. A report by the National Asphalt Pavement Association showed that 2.27 million miles of interstate highways and roads in the US are paved with Asphalt. About 80 percent of old asphalt can be removed and recycled, saving the taxpayer up to $300 million each year. This material is such an efficient preservative that it was used by ancient Egyptians in the mummification process.
3. It paves almost all our roads and parking areas
More than 94 percent of parking areas and pathways in the US are paved with asphalt. It is more preferred material over concrete because of its cost-effectiveness, durability, and strength. Asphalt paving is also a versatile substance that simplifies construction, making it ideal for use in a variety of applications in commercial and residential areas. For instance, porous asphalt is increasingly being used in low-impact storm water management areas because it handles runoff water more effectively.
4. It reduces noise pollution and saves us time
A study carried out by the Federal Highway Association found that roads paved with asphalt are so smooth that they reduce the fuel consumption of trucks by as much as 4.5 percent. The same report showed that these roads reduce highway noise by between 3 and 5 dB(A), enabling smoother rides and safer journeys. Besides, the construction of these roads are completed quickly because asphalt paving is easy to work, saving commuters millions of work hours every year and reducing traffic delays.
5. It interconnects the society without harming the environment
Asphalt makes significant contributions to the cohesiveness and safety of the community by providing jobs and a long-lasting transportation and communication product. Every $1 billion worth of asphalt surface paved creates over 28,000 jobs with no risk to the community or the environment.
Paving – What Are Your Needs?
According to Wikipedia, our relationship with asphalt began in the 13th century when indigenous people used it as an adhesive for making ceremonial items and building materials. The Babylonians may have been among the first people to use it for road pavements, starting a trend that paved the road for modern civilization. Do you appreciate asphalt more now?
If you’re looking to repair, replace or upgrade your paving, call us for quotes and advisory for asphalt paving. We’re paving experts and we’re responsive, reliable and do great work for our clients – 732-886-1940