Recycled plastic has been used to resurface a road in Flintshire as part of innovative trial which is understood to be the first of its kind in Wales.
Approximately 150kg of waste material was added to tarmac as part of roadworks carried out at the junction of Hall Lane and Normanby Drive in Connah’s Quay this afternoon.
The plastic road surface was mixed by construction firm Breedon Southern Limited at their new plant in Llay.
General manager for North Wales Andy Roberts, who oversaw the roadworks, said there were a number of positives to the trial, “The addition of the plastic has not only the benefit of using recycled plastic that otherwise might have gone to landfill or been sent out of the country.
“The secondary benefit is that we can reduce the oil content within the mix so there’s also a hydrocarbon benefit.
“I’m aware of a number of trials throughout the UK, but to my knowledge this is the first time it’s been used on a public highway in Wales.”
The scheme is being pioneered by Flintshire Council to find a way to reuse items collected from residents’ bins which are difficult to recycle and divert them from landfill sites.
Officers from the local authority have been working closely with Scottish company MacRebur, which produces plastic pellets from bottles and bags to be melted into the asphalt as a binding agent in place of bitumen.
Cllr Carolyn Thomas, Flintshire Council’s deputy leader, said it was hoped the plastic surface would be more durable and deliver environmental improvements, “It was suggested by a few of our councillors as a way of reusing plastic.
“We’ve chosen an area of road that’s well used and it’s on a junction which are usually the first areas to break up.
“It’s a trial area so we are monitoring it and I would like to see it last a number of years so we can roll it out to other areas as well.”
The potential solution was first put forward by Connah’s Quay councillor Paul Shotton, who has also touted the idea of using drones to spot and fix potholes, He said: “I noticed this concept a few years ago and I am pleased Welsh Government has funded this pilot scheme.
“(The aim is) to solve the recycled plastic problem and enhance the asphalt used to make a more durable, longer lasting road surface.”
By Liam Randall – Local Democracy Reporter
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