MnDOT Developing New Type of Pavement
MnDOT is developing a new type of road surface.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation has been developing a new type of road surface that allows water to flow through instead of puddle on the surface.
Dr. Bernard Izevbekhai is a Concrete Research Engineer for MnDOT. He says regular pavement can cause hydroplaning, and send run-off to rivers and lakes, "It can also cause issues with splash and spray and that reduces visibility. But with the pervious pavement, splash and spray is highly reduced, almost nonexistent."
Another benefit, according to Dr. Izevbekhai is cost. He says pervious roads use less sand, and that alone lowers the cost of materials. In addition, Dr. Izevbekhai says highway construction cost can be lowered, "The advantage of that lies in the fact that we can save quite an astronomical percentage of taxpayer money in the fact that we don't need to build hydrolic structures. We don't need to build culverts because the water finds its way directly into the ground."
Dr. Izevbekhai says Minnesota roads must be able to withstand harsh conditions and plowing, and that the pervious pavement appears durable, "This has been plowed continuously, just like we would do on a local road. It has withstood plowing."
MnDOT says more research needs to be done, but expects the road surface could be in wide use in five years.