The idea of using re-using plastic in this way, was put forward by Dutch Construction firm VolkerWessels.
The firm predicts their recycled plastic surfaces could be roadworthy within three years, producing less of a carbon footprint, requiring less maintenance and coping better with extreme temperatures.
VolkerWessels add that another advantage is quicker laying time in comparison to asphalt, and the ability to run power and utility cables through it as the road will be hollow.
It will also mean less annoying roadworks as stuck it can be constructed off-site and then delivered to wherever it’s required. This in turn will lead to less of an impact on the environment and also in terms of transporting raw materials
The exciting concept is still at the ideas stage, requiring partners such as plastics manufacturers who can contribute to the project. VolkerWessel is also seeking expressions of interest from the recycling sector and universities. More research is needed to ascertain how the road will hold up in wet weather and slippery conditions.
The idea will be used in a pilot scheme in Rotterdam city, which is aiming to become the world’s most sustainable port city.