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Sustainable Road Renewal

Sustainable Road Renewal
Published 30 November 2020
When planning for any major road renewal project we look for new ways to optimise sustainable practices - on Robert Road, we used two.

Upgrade of Robert Road, Penfield

Roads are one of our key assets in Playford, with over 832km of sealed and 66km of unsealed roads under Council management. When planning for any major road renewal project we look for new ways to optimise sustainable practices. For the Robert Road upgrade, two methods were employed which use environmental waste to create a road with greater longevity than standard roads.

Crushing it

When upgrading city infrastructure, like footpaths, kerbing, old bus pads or concrete pipes, we often need to remove the old to install the new. The old concrete has to go somewhere. Over the last 15 years we’ve stockpiled approximately 45,000t of broken concrete slabs adjacent to Robert Road.

Now thanks to an innovative new project with Adelaide Resource Recovery and government agencies, that stockpile has been put to use. By crushing the concrete into rubble, we’ve converted this waste material to re-usable road sub-base and laid it under the recently upgraded Robert Road. This has the significant environmental benefit of not only removing the stockpiled eyesore, but turning it into a resource.

A Crumby Solution

Another ongoing environmental issue is the difficulties disposing of old tyres - but there are growing uses for this scrap rubber. By breaking down tyres and ‘crumbing’ them, the rubber has various practical uses, such as sports field underlays or synthetic sport surfaces.

In the Robert Road upgrade we’ve turned this scrap rubber into a useful product, using it as a filler to blend with bitumen spray seal. Originally trialled in the mid-seventies, this method is particularly good at inhibiting cracking, and has proven to have exceptional performance in our extreme Australian conditions. Our project partner, Boral, resurfaced up to 6km of Robert Road, which used the equivalent of almost 350 truck tyres previously destined for landfill.

Just imagine as you drive over Robert Road next time, that you may be driving over footpaths you once walked on, or on tyres that once drove on our roads.