Bonded Wearing Course: Boston's pilot pavement preservation program
October 6, 2016
What’s the best way to treat roads that are in poor condition? Don’t let them get that bad in the first place! That’s the idea behind the pavement preservation movement, an industry-wide change that aims to use less-intensive (and cheaper) treatments on roads that are still in fair condition to keep them from getting worse. Boston is signing on with our first trial of Bonded Wearing Course in the Brighton neighborhood in October.
Bonded Wearing Course is the application of a thick and very sticky coat of liquid asphalt (tack coat) covered by a thin application of a stony asphalt pavement. The tack coat tightly bonds the new layer of pavement to the old pavement, creating something like a new skin. The whole application is less than a half an inch thick and in other states has lasted more than 12 years.
As is typical with all pavement treatments, not every street is a good candidate for a Bonded Wearing Course. The street can be cracked, but not too cracked. It has to be fairly flat, with ruts less than a half an inch deep. Manhole covers and other cast iron structures are tough to work around and tight corners can also be difficult.
Look for Bonded Wearing Course going down on the following streets in the first few weeks of October: Cambridge Street, Lincoln Street, Corey Road, Windom Street, Myrick Street, South Waverly Street, Allston Street, Summit Avenue, Egremont Street, Mapleton Street, and Coolidge Road.