Decision –Making Support Model for Sustainable Road Pavements

Paper by VAN HARTSKAMP VAN LEEST from ISCR 11th 2010 Seville Spain

The task of calculating road pavements is an easy one. However, reaching the point of choosing a type of pavement one is confronted with many possible solutions. They can all meet to the technical terms, such as bearing capacity, safety and durability. The growing importance of sustainable building has added a new dimension to the process of decision-making. Not only construction costs, maintenance costs and environmental impact have to be considered. Other aspects such as construction risks, accessibility during service life, user costs and fuel consumption must at least be qualified and weighted if not calculated. This makes the process a lot more difficult. Environmental impact is not limited to air pollution and need of energy. Greenhouse gas emissions, use of natural resources and water consumption must be taken into account too. And that is not all. These aspects must be qualified or quantified and weighted in a multi-criteria analysis to reach the most favourable choice. And at the highest objectivity-rate possible. A CROW study group has developed a decision support model in 2004. With this model all the above mentioned aspects can be taken into account in the process of choosing between asphalt, concrete or block pavement. In 2008 the model has been actualised. Besides the traditional road pavement materials also new materials like light-weighed embankment materials, low temperature asphalt, fibre reinforced concrete and concrete with recycled aggregates are available in the material database. Furthermore the first model needed to be adjusted to the latest environmental impact data. With the renewed model the differences between the various pavement options can be showed even better. It gives a helping hand to reach to the most sustainable pavement type for a new road or when an existing road has te be reconstructed. In this paper a short description of the updated model is given as well as an example of the decision-making process for a provincial road section.

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