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Pavement Preservation

 What is Pavement Preservation?

Pavement preservation is a cost-effective technique that extends pavement lifespans. This form of proactive repair makes highway road conditions safer, allows for a free flow of traffic and saves taxpayer dollars.

Traditional highway repair follows a “worst-first” strategy, where roads are repaired only when conditions are unserviceable. This is not only dangerous to roads with declining conditions, but it is not a sound financial strategy.

When a road is only repaired when no longer drivable, it requires a complete reconstruction. This is much more costly than the new preventative measures that have been introduced.

Road repair can be divided into two categories:

Routine Maintenance

Routine maintenance is the common traditional practice, where sections of the road are repaired only after events or seasons. This restores serviceability of the road.

Preventative Maintenance

Preventative maintenance is a proactive measure to extend road lifespans while also repairing road damage. This not only restores serviceability but also reduces aging of the pavement.

Preventative maintenance is the new alternative to traditional pavement repair and promises many benefits. Each dollar spent on preventative measures now will save an estimated six dollars in future routine maintenance.

Types of Pavement Preservation

Asphalt Binders/Emulsions

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Emulsions and binders are cost-effective and energy-efficient alternatives to hot-mix asphalt. Learn more

Concrete Pavement Repairs

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Similar to asphalt repairs, concrete pavement requires preservation techniques for durability and sustainability. Full-depth and partial-depth repairs are the most common, but many alternative treatments are emerging in the industry. Learn more

Crack & Joint Treatments

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Cracks and joints are more isolated repairs that require individual treatments. Crack sealing and crack filling are both techniques to prevent water or incompressible materials from entering the crack. The difference between the two is that crack sealing uses specialized treatments and crack filling uses ordinary treatments. Learn more

Thin Surface Elements

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Thin overlays are used with structurally-sound roads to increase surface life and improve driving conditions. Endurablend™ is a thin polymer cement surfacing treatment that can imrpvoe surface quality with low cost and higher road lifespans. Learn more

Initiatives and Movements

Many organizations have made important steps in education and accessibility of pavement preservation.

For example, the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO) is a leading orazniztion that provides educational materials for pavement preservation to state highway agencies.

Many groups have contributed to the cause of improving road safety around the county, including:

Pavement Preservation Research

Research is being conducted right now in improving the many different preservation techniques and proving the advantages of pavement preservation.

Asphalt Pavement Embrittlement Study

Studying the strength and life-cycle improvement of asphalt using multiple binders and emulsions.

Performance of Conventional Hot-Mix Asphalt Overlays and High Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement Content Overlays

Different thin overlays, including hot-mix and high-reclaimed, are tested for strength and durability.

Optimizing Highway Performance: Pavement Preservation

One dollar spent on preservation now saves roughly six dollars of routine maintenance that would have been necessary for the future.