Hampshire trials new highways technique

Hampshire County Council is trialling a new way of fixing roads that could save taxpayers up to £1 million.

The local authority, its term highways contractor Amey, and subcontractor Allasso Recycling, are trying out a sustainable way to re-use existing road and footway materials for new road improvements.

The product used is ‘Hydraulically Bound Material’ (HBM) and it can be used in footway and carriageway construction works.

The partners have developed a new way to use HBM, which means it can be put back into the highway, without any impact on the environment, without the need for heat and new aggregate material, as well as avoiding disposal costs. Traditionally, tar has had to be disposed of at specially licensed facilities because it is classed as a hazardous material, and this has been a significant barrier in the re-use of existing road surfacing.

Councillor Seán Woodward, executive member for economy, transport and environment at Hampshire County Council, said: “The innovative way our highways service is using this material has huge potential. Financially, we can save money not only by using the recycled material instead of buying new, but also in the costs of disposal and transporting old material. From an environmental perspective, with the material used consisting of 97% recycled product, this has the potential to be a long term, sustainable way of surfacing the roads.”

Dave Trowell, director at Allasso Recycling, added: “We welcome the opportunity to offer our experience and knowledge to work with Hampshire County Council. The County Council should be applauded for having the foresight in considering the re-use of materials. The HBM product is only the beginning as the intention is to manufacture all other materials required to construct and maintain a highway network.”

David Ogden, account director at Amey, commented: “We’re constantly looking at innovative ways to deliver a more efficient highways service in a sustainable way. We’re excited to continue working with Hampshire County Council and Allasso Recycling to further develop the use of HBM, which will enable us to reduce the environmental impact of repairing the county’s roads.”

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Are these people in the dark ages? This has been around for 20 years and if they are going to save a million pounds a year they could have saved £20 m by now!