March 09, 2020
If you are erecting a new municipal building, apartment complex, or shopping center, parking will be a significant consideration. In the planning stages, you’ll have to determine where the parking will be as well as how much space you can devote to it. Once you’ve made those determinations, take some time to consider what you will use to pave the lot. There are a few different choices, but it usually comes down to concrete or asphalt. There are pros and cons to both, but we will discuss the benefits of asphalt over concrete parking lots.
Compared to concrete, an asphalt parking lot goes down at the speed of light. It is so much faster to install than concrete. Depending on the conditions and weather, an asphalt parking lot can go down in as little as two days. The size of the project will play a part in the timeline, of course, but the speed saves money on labor and materials over concrete. It takes twice as long to prep the land and install concrete as it does for asphalt, and concrete also needs more time to cure and set.
Nothing will last forever without some maintenance and TLC, including asphalt. With some preventative maintenance and repairs, it will last a lifetime. That maintenance will keep it looking like new too. A fresh seal coat every other year will have it looking brand new. Eventually, simple seal coating won’t be enough to salvage the top layer, but at that point it can get a new top layer of fresh asphalt in a day.
Asphalt is a recyclable product. Once an old parking lot or driveway is taken up, that material is reusable. Large machines grind up the aggregate, pile it up, and coat it again to make new asphalt. Reduce, reuse, and recycle! Those words don’t often fit with construction, but when talking about asphalt, they sure apply.
In cold weather climates, with months of below-freezing temperatures, asphalt is a better choice over concrete. Cold weather wreaks havoc on concrete parking lots. It is susceptible to frost heave. That’s when the moisture in the ground freezes and pushes up on the concrete. It causes stress and eventually cracks that must be repaired right away. The continuous freeze and thaw cycles of the seasons cause constant freeze/thaw expansions and contractions in the concrete, and it’s more expensive to repair concrete than asphalt.
Once your asphalt parking lot project is complete, consider our new striping equipment for sale to add the finishing touches. Contact NAC Supply today!
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