Term: Road surface

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**1. Historical Development of Road Surfaces:**
– Wheeled transport led to the need for better roads throughout history.
– Various civilizations like the Minoans and Romans developed advanced paved roads.
– Different road surfaces like stone-paved streets and corduroy roads emerged in ancient times.
– Roman roads showcased a range from simple corduroy to deep rubble-paved roads.

**2. Modern Road Surface Innovations:**
– Permeable paving methods and research projects like Long-Term Pavement Performance are enhancing road surface longevity.
– Notable figures like John Metcalf, Pierre-Marie-Jérôme Trésaguet, Thomas Telford, and John Loudon McAdam made significant contributions to highway construction.
– Edgar Purnell Hooley patented modern tarmac in 1901, revolutionizing road surfaces.
– Good drainage, proper design, and maintenance are crucial for ensuring road safety and durability.

**3. Pavement Materials and Types:**
– Asphalt, concrete, stones, artificial stone, bricks, tiles, and wood are commonly used paving materials.
– Pavements are integral to hardscape design in landscape architecture.
– Different types of asphalt like hot mix, warm mix, and cold mix cater to various road construction needs.
– Beaten gravel pavements and the importance of good drainage for durability are key aspects of pavement construction.

**4. Road Surface Alternatives and Techniques:**
– Composite pavements combine concrete sublayers with asphalt overlays for enhanced durability.
– Recycling methods like rubblizing, cold and hot in-place recycling, and full-depth reclamation offer sustainable solutions.
– Bituminous surface treatments like chipseal and thin membrane surfaces are popular for specific road types and terrains.
– Otta seal and gravel surfaces provide cost-effective options for road construction in different settings.

**5. Advantages, Disadvantages, and Maintenance of Road Surfaces:**
– Asphalt roadways are cost-effective, have low noise levels, and are suitable for various traffic volumes.
– Concrete surfaces offer strength and durability but may be more expensive initially.
– Proper maintenance, markings for guidance, and considerations for acoustical implications and economic effects are essential for ensuring road longevity and user safety.

Road surface (Wikipedia)

A road surface (British English) or pavement (North American English) is the durable surface material laid down on an area intended to sustain vehicular or foot traffic, such as a road or walkway. In the past, gravel road surfaces, macadam, hoggin, cobblestone and granite setts were extensively used, but these have mostly been replaced by asphalt or concrete laid on a compacted base course. Asphalt mixtures have been used in pavement construction since the beginning of the 20th century and are of two types: metalled (hard-surfaced) and unmetalled roads. Metalled roadways are made to sustain vehicular load and so are usually made on frequently used roads. Unmetalled roads, also known as gravel roads or dirt roads, are rough and can sustain less weight. Road surfaces are frequently marked to guide traffic.

A road being resurfaced using a road roller
Red surfacing for a bicycle lane in the Netherlands
Construction crew laying down asphalt over fiber-optic trench, in New York City

Today, permeable paving methods are beginning to be used for low-impact roadways and walkways to prevent flooding. Pavements are crucial to countries such as United States and Canada, which heavily depend on road transportation. Therefore, research projects such as Long-Term Pavement Performance have been launched to optimize the life cycle of different road surfaces.

Pavement, in construction, is an outdoor floor or superficial surface covering. Paving materials include asphalt, concrete, stones such as flagstone, cobblestone, and setts, artificial stone, bricks, tiles, and sometimes wood. In landscape architecture, pavements are part of the hardscape and are used on sidewalks, road surfaces, patios, courtyards, etc.

The term pavement comes from Latin pavimentum, meaning a floor beaten or rammed down, through Old French pavement. The meaning of a beaten-down floor was obsolete before the word entered English.

Pavement, in the form of beaten gravel, dates back before the emergence of anatomically modern humans. Pavement laid in patterns like mosaics were commonly used by the Romans.

The bearing capacity and service life of a pavement can be raised dramatically by arranging good drainage by an open ditch or covered drains to reduce moisture content in the pavements subbase and subgrade.

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