Cement Concrete Public Highways Recent Developments in Technical Literature and Applications

Paper by ABDO CHRISTORY ROUSSEL from ISCR 8th 1998 Lisbon Portugal

In a still recent past, research and innovation in the field of concrete pavements progressed mainly within the field of high volume pavements for roads and airports. This sustained and productive effort remains, giving rise to an expertise well documented in technical publications. Several countries converge in adopting constructive measures, mastering conception as well as production, measures that result in public highways offering a very high level of service, and excellent durability. Composite pavements, for instance, are a perfect example of the modern technological solutions offered by cement concrete structures, attaining to a level of excellency acknowledged by the owner for its durability, and by the final user for its comfort. While these progress have occurred in larger infrastructures, the needs and prospective market have evolved towards concrete pavements in more varied forms: internal vibration concrete, composite or modular concrete, and concrete in various surface and structure situations, deactivated, imprinted, etc., and have been a major concern in our country for the past decade. The field of low volume roads has been well covered, but more recently urban public highways have been given special attention by iesearchers, designers and contractors. We shall thus present the specificities of this particular area of civil engineering when it is merges with urban engineering, and the new roles expected at present from cement concrete in regard to the conception, construction and maintenance of urban highways and public areas in general. We intend to sum up the logics induced by a recent technical literature that gives a thoroughly authentic expression to the diversity accessible today as regards surface condition, aesthetic quality, sound level, and integration to an equipment option. With the purpose of creating << qualitative >> structures, the attractive economical positioning of cement concrete should be underlined. Besides technical novelties within design and construction forms, we shall specify the organisational terms of the partnership conducted by researchers, practitioners and professionals, with particular attention given to the involvement of the 'Association des Ingénieurs des Villes de France', the 'Réseau Technique du Ministère de l'Equipement et des Transports', and professional syndicates within the cement and concrete industry. Ultimately we shall underline ways to rationally arrive - within some specific areas of use - at the cement concrete technique, by testing systems analysis methods and value analysis applied to urban highways.

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