Use and cost-effectiveness of permeable geosynthetics on Scottish road projects

M. G. Winter, J. R. Cross, J. Oliphant

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    The use of permeable geosynthetics on Scottish trunk roads was studied over the period from 1980 to 1994. Questionnaires were sent to 55 organizations and details of a total of 103 applications were received. Data on quantities are reported for 86 applications, giving a total use in excess of 1 Mm2. The cost of the 75 applications for which data were available was approximately £1.3 million. Calculations show that permeable geosynthetics are generally more cost-effective than conventional solutions; this is supported by a review of the available literature. Relatively few data were obtained on alternative solutions. If the increasing use of permeable geosynthetics is to be justified economically, then alternative solutions need to be considered and costed. However, their use is expected to increase regardless, as justification is frequently on technical grounds. Problems identified in relation to the use of permeable geosynthetics in soil environments emphasize the importance of correct design and specification, careful installation and adequate site drainage. In addition, problems were encountered with reinforcement of pavements. The use of geogrids in bound pavement structures is not currently allowed on Scottish trunk roads and motorways. There is no evidence of contractural claims arising from the use of permeable geosynthetics.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)111-118
    Number of pages8
    JournalProceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers: Transport
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - May 1997


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