APA announces 2011 Perpetual Pavement awards

The Asphalt Pavement Alliance announced the winners of its 2011 Perpetual Pavement awards program.

These national awards are given to road-owning agencies for asphalt pavements that are at least 35 years old and have never had a structural failure. The average interval between resurfacing of each winning pavement must be no less than 13 years, and the road must demonstrate excellence in design, quality in construction and value for the traveling public.

Engineers at the National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT) evaluated the nominations for the Perpetual Pavement award, and a panel of industry experts validated the winners. They are:

  • The Alabama Department of Transportation for an 8.5-mile section of State Route 17 in Washington County
  • The Florida State Department of Transportation for a 13.2-mile section of State Route 997 in Miami-Dade County
  • The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet for a 6.6 mile-section of Hal Rogers Parkway in Leslie County
  • The Minnesota Department of Transportation for a 16.7-mile section of U.S. Trunk Highway 71 in Stearns and Todd Counties
  • The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for a 2.7-mile section of State Route 210 in Armstrong County

A perpetual pavement is constructed so that distress occurs in the top layer only. The only rehabilitation required is the removal of the distressed surface layer and resurfacing with an asphalt overlay. Using current pavement technologies this can be done on an infrequent basis – every 15 to 20 years. The reclaimed material is then recycled, making perpetual pavement the ultimate in sustainable design and construction

“One of the keys to sustainability is long life,” said Michael J. Kvach, executive director of the Asphalt Pavement Alliance. “Asphalt roads can be engineered to last indefinitely with only routine maintenance and periodic surface renewal.

The advantages of these perpetual pavements are significant. Life cycle costs are lower because deep pavement repairs and reconstruction are avoided. User delays are reduced because minor surface rehabilitation requires shorter work windows and can avoid peak traffic hours. And the environment benefits because minimal rehabilitation, combined with recycling any materials that are removed from the pavement surface, reduces the amount of material resources over the pavement’s life.”

Each of the winners will receive an engraved crystal obelisk and their names and the names of the projects will be added to a permanent plaque that is kept at NCAT. Eighty pavements have received the Perpetual Pavement Award since the awards program began in 2001.

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