The Sustainable Pavement
There are a host of ways to make pavement more sustainable, environmentally friendly and long lasting. As we head into the hottest days of summer we wanted to report on four examples of sustainable pavement issues and how they can be incorporated into the designs that we do for your site.
Stormwater Reduction – It may not be possible to have a completely sewer free pavement due to site limitations but one or a combination of the following can be installed on site to help control and reduce storm water runoff. Porous pavement allows storm water to pass through the top layer of pavement (either asphalt or concrete) and enter a stone recharge bed beneath the pavement. The water can then be absorbed into the soil and help recharge the local groundwater reserves. This application takes a lot of careful design, extra dig outs and may not be feasible due to site limitations. Bio-swales are planted areas that collect water and allow it to naturally percolate into the soil while also watering any vegetation that has been planted. Off lot retention areas can pool water and slow down the flow to local area inlets.
Coal Tar Pavement Sealer – Several state municipalities have begun to phase out the use of coal tar (a byproduct of burning coal) in asphalt sealcoat. The alternative is an asphalt based sealer. We indicate a preference for asphalt based sealants when available.
Warm Mix Asphalt – These asphalt mixes use a variety of additives to lower the temperature that is needed to produce a workable asphalt mix. The lower temperature means less energy is used in production, a more pleasant product to work with on site and lower emissions in general.
Long Term Design – The design of your pavement maintenance, rehab or reconstruction project is where the environmental benefits start. The components of the project should be designed to perform long term. This will save money and energy, allow for the pavement to be easily maintained and then rehabilitated when necessary.
Our sole focus is pavement. We design projects that fit your site, your budget and your environmental goals. We make sure that the project that is bid, is the project that you receive. We are your pavement consultants.
For more information about our company, please visit our website.
3 Ways A Well Designed Pavement Project Enhances a Community
Every community has them. A set of roadways, parking areas and sidewalks that are vital to the proper functioning of the community. These structures are generally the largest and most expensive shared asset within a community.
More than just pieces of pavement these areas are the one thing that each member of the community uses and are the first thing that visitors to a community experience. Ensuring that each of these assets stays functional requires maintaining them over a long period of time. Whether it’s a pavement maintenance, rehab or reconstruction project, the right design is crucial for meeting the community’s needs. This means that the pavement in a community is not only structurally sound but helps to enhance the community.
The following are three ways that a well designed pavement project enhances a community –
Safety – This is an item that is easy to overlook. Many times the first worry is curb appeal or drivability but a critical element of any area of pavement is how safe it is to use. Sidewalks need to be free of trip hazards and low areas that can collect water. Roadways need to be free of potholes or other uneven areas to ensure safe driving. A rushed design that is completed without the community’s best interest in mind can often disregard or overlook dealing with these issues.
Added Value – The right design for a pavement project ensures that the community is getting the project that they need and have a budget for, but also one that adds to the appeal of the neighborhood. This extra appeal can add to the value of the community and attract future homeowners with the knowledge that one critical piece of the community infrastructure has been well designed and less likely to be an unexpected expense in the future.
Tie the Community Together – The pavement in a community isn’t merely the concrete and asphalt or curbs and sidewalks. It’s the way each of those pieces work individually and collectively. By having a pavement project that takes into account all aspects of the pavement system and the community’s needs, a better more comprehensive design can emerge. Pavement design plans should take both vehicle and pedestrian areas into consideration and ensure that the installed pavement ties together and enhances the community.
For more information please visit our website – Cox Pavement Consulting
4 Reasons to Pay Attention to ADA Parking Compliance
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has been in effect since 1990 and was updated most recently in 2010. In the almost 23 years since, great strides have been made in making the nation’s infrastructure accessible to more people. Evidence of the law’s impact can be seen everywhere from accessible parking spaces to interior features that allow easy navigation of a building.
However, a huge portion of the nations infrastructure was built prior to 1992 (when the new construction requirements went into effect). That means these buildings and parking areas weren’t completed with ADA compliance in mind. After 1992 and even continuing today, many new structures fall short of full ADA compliance. While the ADA allows for some variance in certain circumstances, the majority of publicly accessible buildings need to be brought into compliance whenever site alterations are made.
Compliance with the ADA means more people can access the nations parking lots, buildings and recreation areas. In short, more people can access your business. Non-compliance can mean lost customers, lost revenue and worse. Below are four reasons why building owners and property managers need to pay attention to the ADA.
It’s the right thing to do and it’s the law. If you own or manage a parking lot that is non-compliant with the ADA, and any upgrades are initiated, you must bring the site into compliance as, “any portion of the facility that can be made accessible shall be made accessible to the extent that it is not structurally impracticable”. (2010 ADA 28 CFR 35.151 New Construction and Alterations) While there are exceptions to this portion of the law, it’s important to recognize that the ADA requires money spent on a site be first spent to ensure compliance.
It can cost a lot of money to violate the ADA. Civil penalties can start at $55,000 for the first violation and rise to $110,000 for any subsequent violations. (2010 ADA 28 CFR Part 36 – Title III)
Upgrading the accessible parking spaces and access routes can drive the entire pavement project. As most compliant spaces and routes are near the main entrances of your building, any changes to those spaces will effect how the rest of the parking area and sidewalks are designed. You also need to be aware that just because a lot has accessible spaces marked out, they may not necessarily be compliant.
Better access to your buildings means easier client engagement and more accessible conditions for anyone using the building and surrounding parking structures. Why would you want to limit who has access to your parking areas, buildings and businesses? You wouldn’t.
ADA compliance evaluations are integral to our pavement design process. We ensure that you know exactly what changes need to be made to your parking and accessible routes so your building is in compliance with the ADA. Information provided does not constitute legal advice. For more information on the ADA please go here.