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October 28, 2017 12:10 am

City Buying Asphalt Recycler

Friday, February 19, 2016 @ 10:37 AM

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at left,  loading asphalt millings into a portable recylcer,   while at right,   new   product  from the machinery – images courtesy City of Prince George.

Prince George, B.C. – The  City will soon be inviting bids  from  vendors  for a portable asphalt recycling machine.

That’s good news when  it comes to pothole repairs in the City,  as  the portable machine will mean crews can  use a “hot mix”  during the colder months when the asphalt plants are not yet up and running.   A  patch made with  a hot mix lasts longer than the  current cold mix that’s used   from late fall till   May.

“This unit will provide multiple benefits for residents. It means we won’t have to wait until the plants are open to begin doing longer lasting patches on the most troublesome potholes on our streets,” says Blake MacIntosh, Manager of Roads and Fleet.

On average, the City of Prince George produces 5000 tonnes of asphalt millings per year. The millings are currently applied to existing gravel roads within the City to eliminate dust issues.  When using the asphalt recycler, old asphalt is loaded into the unit’s hopper and fed into a drum. The asphalt material is heated, mixed in the drum, and recycled back into useable hot mix asphalt. Within eight to 10 minutes, one tonne of recycled asphalt can be produced.

“With the use of an asphalt recycler, new aggregate does not have to be mined and quarried, new asphaltic oils don’t need to be refined, transport requirements of raw materials are reduced, and GHG emissions are limited,” says MacIntosh. “The only additional resources required are the fuel needs of the asphalt recycler, equipment to fill the hopper and to transport and place the recycled asphalt. It is also possible to recycle the same section of asphalt numerous times.”
The Bagela BA10000 Asphalt Recycler current purchase price is $175,000. A request for proposal (RFP) will be posted by the end of March and the City hopes to have the unit in operation by late 2016.

from January 1st of this year to Feb 17,  crews have repaired 1267 potholes in the City.  That may sound like a lot, but  that’s  63%  fewer potholes  this year than  during the same period a year ago.

Often,  when there is a very active freeze thaw cycle,  crews will have to make multiple repairs to the same  pothole using the cold mix.




Pot holes occur mainly because of issues with the base and subbase issues. Repairing potholes is same as putting on a bandage onto a problem.

So if the number of potholes has decreased by 68%, why. Two good reasons why, we have had only one freeze thaw cycle this year, As well the city has increased their repaving program and lot of the streets have new asphalt….

So why do we need to buy this????

    Get out much?? I find this funny….cause I watched them Dump up behind transfer station in CH…Hmmmm…is this where they gonna park it?

and GHG emissions are limited, wow where do they come up with this BS

Sorry but this kind of expenditure only serves to support the City workers’ union, perpetuate those positions, even create a need for more union workers. No offense to them, I’m a union member myself.
I just think that this expenditure will not make a great amount of difference to the long term condition of City roads.

It is just another, more expensive method of temporarily patching up roadways that probably did not have an adequate base at the beginning of construction, and of course many areas were probably not intended to carry heavy traffic.

It costs a lot of money up front to plan, prepare and build a roadway that will stand up to the rigours of heavy traffic, our weather, and of course local soil conditions.
Like the Salmon Vally bridge, “do it right the first time!”

    Do it right the first time??

    So which fortune teller do you use to determine traffic volumes, GVW, traffic speed as well as increase in geotech engineering knowledge fifty years into the future?

Thats the wonderful thing about a democracy, we’re all entitled to express our own opinions. :)

    I see no problem with the bulk of the post. The thought I was addressing was “do it right the first time” and was merely asking what special insight you have as to what is right?

    Anyone who has such insight and is proven to be right say 60%+ of the time when others said otherwise should be worth at least as much as a CEO earning in the high six figure range.

    That phrase goes beyond being an opinion. It goes to a belief that people are actually capable of predicting future conditions, such as PG growing to 200,000 population by the year 2000, or the current prediction that PG will not make 100,000 by 2050.

I was just checking the changes in rail traffic due to the huge increase in container shipping which has caused some unbelievable tie ups at ports with trucks, rail, and even lack of deep enough seaports in North America. It appears that the Europeans have deeper seaports and can take larger ships.

And, of course, we all know we have been widening the Suez Canal as well as the Panama Canal several times since they were first built.

Then there are those who lengthen airport runways based on maximum flight distances of airplanes at the time the runways are extended. Chances are that new aircraft will have longer ranges, origin and destination points will change, distribution will adjust to include smaller airports as additional hubs to take the load off the mega hubs, etc.

There are far too many changes in today’s world over a person’s and an organization’s lifetime to make it cost effective in most cases to gamble on some future need which may not happen.

Infrastructure, whether it is hard or soft, changes over time and as time progresses seems to change more quickly. Looking at it in increments of centuries, that is very obvious. It is starting to become more an more obvious for spans as short as decades. For electronic devices, for medicine, pharmacology, and other specialties it is even shorter than that.

” It is also possible to recycle the same section of asphalt numerous times.” .. that statement pretty much explains why their roadwork doesn’t seem to last very long. IF they get 2 seasons on a redone piece of city road (highways aren’t much better) that’s doing good. In the name of being green I think a lot of corners are cut when it comes to paving these days.

    An old friend of mine has been in the asphalt business most of his life. He makes a good point: Have you noticed that new pavement turns from black to grey in less than a year? It is the asphalt plants skimping on the bitumen “oil” that goes into the product…. less oil means less binding agent, the finished product also ends up more porous and allows moisture to infiltrate the asphalt.
    I do hope this new asphalt recycler makes pothole repairs last much longer. I see too many around that get “fixed” only to be bigger and badder within mere days or weeks… nothing gets built to last anymore (cars, roads, furniture, appliances etc).
    Maybe the City can sell some of this hot material to YRB to offset the cost. Highways pothole repairs are poor bandaids too.

      Interesting. It’s the double edge to low bid contracts. Can’t blame the pavers on that one. The bitumen
      should be half the cost this season I assume. Curious if the recycler is more of a power play to keeping costs in check here vs other cities.

They will have to permanently park that machine on marleau, Bear road area.

I think this is a good thing not haveing to depend on someone else to get hot mix.

    I agree. Seems there is no one else providing it in the winter anyway, so there is really no choice. The streets are not the only locations for potholes. Several of the larger parking lots have potholes as well. Likely not enough business for a contractor to repair the City as well as the private paved areas.

Well gopg2015, I don’t claim to be an expert on road building.
My opinion on the matter is based solely on years of observation because I am interested, and a limited amount of gravel road building on my own properties.
What I have noticed is that when a paved or ‘concreted’ area needs to withstand heavy loads, the base preparation is specified accordingly, assuming that a specification has been designed by an engineer.
Said spec’ must take into account site conditions:
– how far down to adequate support
– type of fill, layer by layer
– compaction of fill: maximum layer thickness between compactions
– drainage 1, the base: can’t have water running into the finished base
– drainage 2, off the road surface: must allow rain or melt water to leave the road surface without eroding the shoulder or soaking the base
– adequate shoulder, to prevent crumbling
– year round weather: temperature extremes
– anticipated loading, speed, frequency of traffic
Just a few observations.

    You do not need to argue with me on what it takes to build a proper roadway. Did you not read my response that I do not take issue with that.

    The issue was with the comment of “Do it right the first time.”

    What is right for traffic 50 years ago and traffic today are two totally different things. They probably did it right 50 years ago.

    My residential street was put in place 40 years ago. It has no major problems on the surface. It has some problems with underground services, specifically water. The problems have shown up in in the last couple of years with three houses in a row. Possibly some soldered connection was not done to standard. Maybe the sand bedding was not adequately screened. Who knows.

    Where the main problems have been is with stop and start traffic at the intersection of the arterial and collector roads as well as the same situation of two arterial roads, in this case Ospika and 5th. Washboard from hard stops and further deterioration which was never properly fixed. They have repaved the entire intersection twice.

    I doubt anyone ever did any tests for subsurface conditions before they went ahead to repave the surface.

I trying to locate some expert opinions on the changes in road construction specifications over the last 40 to 50 years. Did not find anything significant after a few minutes, but did find this opinion in an engineering report about the road infrastructure increase in the western world in the last half century.

I thought the first sentence was especially apt to those who have been the keepers of our road infrastructure in PG.

“In many cases governments have been inefficient custodians of road infrastructure as it is tempting to delay road maintenance or improvements because of the high costs involved.”

Something more common to metro areas and provincial highways are the following observations:

“Budgetary problems are also inciting selling assets to increase revenue and reduce expenses. Consequently, a growing number of roads have been privatized and companies specializing in road management have emerged, particularly in Europe and North America. This is only possible on specific trunks that have an important and stable traffic.”

“Private enterprises usually have vested interests to see that the road segments they manage are maintained and improved since the quality of the road will be directly linked with revenue generation.”

“The majority of toll roads are highways linking large cities or bridges and tunnels where there is a convergence of traffic.”

“Most roads are not economically profitable but must be socially present as they are essential to service populations.”

I forgot to say that in my opinion, and it is only an opinion, not a prediction, this equipment will improve the ability of the City to become a more efficient custodian not only of the roads, but also the condition of our cars which receive the brunt of the damage from improperly designed and maintained roads.

BTW, freeze thaw cycles have been increasing over the last 50 years. They occur every 24 hours when the temperature range is around 20C with above freezing during the day and below freezing at night. We have been having that situation for much of the winter this year. Luckily, there has been less precipitation.

Also, it is not only cold climates which get potholes in roads paved with asphalt. Any climate with frequent wet dry cycles and improperly built roads for those conditions will suffer from potholes as well.

According to “Rough Roads Ahead,” a report from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, an industry trade group, more than 60 percent of streets and highways in Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland and Honolulu provide a “poor quality ride.”

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