Company partners with eight local Sydney councils in bid to improve sustainability of local roads
BORAL have been engaged on the largest crumbed rubber asphalt demonstration project in Australia, providing 2,000 tonnes of the sustainable pavement material in addition to 1,200 tonnes of controlled asphalt mix to be paved across eight local Sydney council streets.
Comprising recycled rubber from end-of-life car and truck tyres, crumbed rubber asphalt aims to improve the sustainability and longevity of council roads.
The ‘Reusing Rubber: Recycling Tyres for Roads’ demonstration project by Southern Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (SSROC) aims to make council roads more sustainable, reduce capital and operating expenditure by extending road life, and create a local market for old car and truck tyres by incorporating crumb rubber in bitumen.
An initial 3,600 standard passenger car tyres or 2,400 car and 490 truck tyres combined will be used in the crumbed rubber asphalt trial project. Boral laid their first pavement in early June, with the remaining works to be completed in the coming weeks.
Tim Richards, executive general manager of asphalt at Boral, said: ‘We are pleased to be working with local governments as they innovate and move towards a circular economy to drive sustainability. This is a huge project that will drive benefits for the broader industry and governments of all levels as we look to better understand how recycled rubber asphalt can be tweaked for maximum performance.
‘At Boral, we are committed to decarbonization and, as part of this, we leverage our facilities to process recyclable materials such as construction waste, otherwise destined for landfill. It’s promising to see councils drive initiatives that demonstrate the benefits of repurposing waste, such as creating new roads through recycled tyres.
‘We are eager to find ways to maximize benefits to the community and on road projects through innovative construction materials and methods and look forward to partnering with more local governments on projects such as these.’
Over an initial 12-month period, the performance of each asphalt mix will be monitored in a range of applications and conditions to measure product benefits. The project will generate comprehensive data on the use of recycled rubber-based treatments on local roads and is expected to contribute to the development of crumb rubber asphalt specifications in future projects.
Crumbed rubber asphalt sees recycled rubber, traditionally in the form of a highly refined powder-like product but in this case wet blended prior to production, act as a binder in the construction of asphalt pavements. The sustainable end-product is significantly more durable and resilient than standard asphalt, with the rubber improving the standard properties of the bitumen component. Research suggests crumbed rubber asphalt can double the life of a road.