Best Practices for the Design and Construction of Low-Volume Asphalt Roads

Principal Investigator:

Gene Skok, Former University Researcher, Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering

Project Summary:

Minnesota has many thousands of miles of low-volume road pavements. These roads are under the jurisdiction of counties, cities, municipalities, townships and Mn/DOT. They are surfaced with aggregate, various asphalt mixes and some portland cement concrete. Under-design of thickness and material properties can cause premature failure and require excessive early maintenance and rehabilitation. Over-design will result in needless initial expense. The purpose of this research is to compare the design and performance of Minnesota low-volume roadways with life predictions from Minnesota's mechanistic design approach (ROADENT). Appropriate thickness designs will be calibrated using the performance of some representative roadways in the city and county systems. To supplement the thickness design procedure, a "best practices manual" will be developed which will help assure the performance of pavements designed using the mechanistic-empirical design procedure. An important part of this work will be to present this information to city and county engineers to help with implementation.

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