Exposed Aggregate Concrete Pavement Design Construction and Functional Performance-A Comparison of European and US Experiences


In 2006, a group of highway agency and paving industry representatives from the USA visited Europe in search of current practices for the design, construction, maintenance, and rehabilitation of concrete pavements. In every country visited, examples of exposed aggregate concrete were demonstrated. While not a new discovery, the discussions did invoke a renewed interest in this technology. In 2007, a follow-up tour of Europe was conducted, where texture and noise measurements were conducted using the same technologies as those commonly used in the USA for these purposes. From this, the functional performance of exposed aggregate pavements was compared to that of surface textures commonly constructed in the USA. More recently, a large collaborative effort has been initiated by the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, the National Concrete Pavement Technology Center, and numerous other partners both in the USA and in Europe. The objective is to conduct field demonstrations of exposed aggregate and two-lift concrete pavement technologies in the USA. In 2008, the first large scale demonstration project under this initiative was constructed in the State of Kansas. From these various activities, it can be concluded that exposed aggregate concrete pavement surfaces are viable for use in the USA under certain circumstances. Furthermore, there is the possibility of applying lessons learned in the USA on projects in Europe. The net result is a global technology exchange where both partners can benefit.

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