October 15, 2014

United Companies recently constructed a new roadway using an innovative asphalt mix design that incorporated recycled asphalt shingles.

The Department of Energy awarded United Companies a contract to construct a new roadway into a disposal site located in Mesa County, Colorado. During the preconstruction phase, the Department and construction team discussed how to increase the recycled content of the pavement on the project. United Companies presented the option of using recycled asphalt shingles in addition to recycled asphalt pavement, increasing the recycled content and decreasing the required amount of asphalt cement

Currently, the asphalt industry is the number one recycler in the United States, utilizing over 62 million tons of recycled asphalt per year in new pavements. Recycled asphalt shingles (RAS) offer another component of contributing to the industry’s recycling efforts while offering the same benefits that have been realized with recycled asphalt pavement.

Discarded asphalt shingles are typically sent to the landfill, but because roofing shingles contain both aggregates and asphalt cement, they are a prime material to use in pavements as a means of increasing recycled content and extending valuable aggregate and asphalt cement resources. With the emergence of RAS technology and gaining acceptance with owner agencies, the use of RAS in pavements is now contributing to the industry’s recycling efforts by over one million tons per year.

This is the first project in the Western slope of Colorado that has allowed the use of recycled asphalt shingles, says Kyle Alpha, United Companies general manager. We hope the success of this project has set the stage to continue using RAS in asphalt pavements throughout the state.