In Australia they’re thinking about using printer toner residues into more sustainable asphalt (see this earlier post), in the Netherlands they want to take it even further. Much further. On the 15th of July, the city council of Rotterdam announced a pilot project together with VolkerWessels to investigate the feasaility of recycled plastic roads. That plastic soda botlle you just threw away is indeed suited for recycling purposes other than a winter fleece.
Recycled plastic roads would offer modular road construction and roads could be laid out much quicker. In addition, plastics are corrosion prone and the roads are estimated to last at least three times longer than asphalt which deteriorates over time due to cold temperatures and salt in winter and high temperatures in summer. The right mix of plastics on the other hand can easily handle temperatures between -30°C and 80°C. The roads would be suited to build in other elements, such as sensors and photovoltaic cells. Altough it’s still a concept on paper, the city of Rotterdam is eager to work together with VolkerWessels to see whether this idea could become reality.