Paving Stones

The pavement is a surface that serves as a covering for the land or what we can simply refer to as a floor. Most types of pavements can be classified into two categories: rigid or flexible. Rigid pavements, in most cases, consist of a Portland cement concrete slab with or without a  base course between the pavement and the subgrade. The concrete itself, exclusive of the base, is referred to as the pavement. Flexible pavements are comprised of a relatively thin wearing surface course, overlaying a base course and, in some instances, a sub-base course, which rests upon the compacted subgrade. The entire system above the subgrade, in this case, is referred to as the pavement.

Design and Construction of Pavements

 

  1. Rigid Pavement

    Rigid pavements are designed based on considerations related to the structural strength of the concrete where traffic loads are distributed over a relatively wide area of the pavement; therefore, the concrete slab itself plays a major role in the structural support of the loads with a base being used for other reasons, such as control of unusual soil conditions (expansive soils), control of climatic conditions (freeze and thaw), sub drainage arid ease of construction. Examples of rigid pavements are poured concrete and clay brick (which must be set in mortar and installed over a concrete slab in order to perform as a load-bearing pavement).

  2. Flexible Pavement

    Flexible pavements, constructed as a system of layers with the highest quality layer nearest the top, are designed based on the load distribution characteristics of the entire system. This system is designed to protect the subgrade against the anticipated loads while, in turn, each layer protects the layer beneath. The pavement is topped with the wearing surface, designed to seal the system against water intrusion and to meet the various traffic requirements under all weather conditions. The thickness design of the pavement is dependent mostly upon the strength of the subgrade.
    The most common flexible pavement is, of course, bituminous concrete (asphalt) which in reality is a liquid in a semi-solid state.

The foregoing was about the categories of pavements and how they are different from each other as regards their elements, construction, and design. However, there is yet another type of pavement called “Interlocking Concrete Paving Stone Pavement” which combines the elements of both the systems and multiplies the advantages that can be achieved through pavements. Along with the advantages of the rigid and flexible pavement system, this system has advantages of its own as well.

 

Interlocking Concrete Paving Stone Pavement

 

Interlocking Concrete Paving Stone Pavement is a special type of paver which uses specialized hardscape tools & techniques in place of bricks or stones for their construction. Because they are made with specialized equipment, concrete pavers are extremely strong (8,500 psi minimum) and have low water absorption (under 5%). Both of these characteristics are key indicators of freeze-thaw resistance and long-term durability (consider that structural concrete is usually 4,000 to 5,000 psi). Consequently, we can say that concrete pavers provide the superior strength advantages that a "rigid" pavement offers. However, because concrete pavers are set to dry on a bedding course of sand and vibrated into place, they also offer the benefits of flexible pavement. They can make minor adjustments to shifting and earth movement without losing their continuity as a pavement. Concrete pavers also have the ability to transfer the load laterally to adjacent pavers as well as vertically to the sub-base. Due to the combined elements of rigid and flexible systems present in it, this system is often called as segmented pavement.