Durability + Design
Follow us on Twitter Follow us on LinkedIn Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram Visit the TPC Store
Search the site

 

D+D News

Main News Page


Yellowstone Upgrades Crumbling Trails

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

More items for Maintenance + Renovation

Comment | More

Thousands of square feet of crumbling asphalt walkways throughout Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming have been replaced with porous concrete surfaces made from stone and recycled tires.

The park has the world’s largest concentration of geysers and thermal features, so the improvements promise to help reduce run-off and erosion in the eco-sensitive area.

Old Faithful
Jim Peaco / National Park Service

Yellowstone's new walkways create more natural water patterns that eventually replenish the Yellowstone Geyser Basin, where Old Faithful is located.

“Yellowstone is the world's first national park with nearly 150 years of balancing the protection of natural wonders and sharing them with visitors,” said Lynn Chan, a landscape architect for the National Park Service and lead on sustainability at Yellowstone National Park. “It is important to us to rehabilitate the park's walkways with materials that can help protect this sensitive environment yet still allow visitors to see and appreciate it.”

Porous Surface

According to a recent announcement, the project team recently installed a product called Flexi-Pave, developed by KBI Industries, for the trail system. The porous, durable and flexible surface allows the water from rain and snow to percolate through the walkway the way it would have done before the walkways were installed and in turn creates more natural water patterns that eventually replenish the Yellowstone Geyser Basin, which features Old Faithful, according to the project details.

path project
Screenshot / Michelin video

The new pathways are designed to evacuate up to 17.3 gallons of water per hour.

The material does not create significant storm-water runoff or leach pollutants into the soil, according to product information. It also does not break apart, which prevents material from ending up in geysers and hot springs.

Flexi-Pave is made of rubber granules and stone held together by a polymer binding agent that is inert when cured, according to its manufacturer. Its open-pore design enables fast evacuation of up to 4,000 cubic inches (17.3 gallons) of water per hour, the company says.

Donated Tires

Tire manufacturer Michelin also served as a partner on the project. Hundreds of tires that Michelin had previously donated for park vehicles were used to help create thousands of square feet of the trails.

The company descirbes the project in this short video.

“This project represents the model for collaboration between public and private organizations,” said Jeff Augustin, vice president of external partnerships at Yellowstone Park Foundation. “We hope that this eco-friendly park walkway will inspire other similar projects that help preserve natural systems.”

In 1872, Yellowstone National Park was established as the United States' first national park and is the world's first national park. Yellowstone hosts around 4 million visitors each year.

   

Tagged categories: concrete; Environmentally friendly; Landscape architects; National Park Service; Permeability; Recycled building materials

Comment from Dick Piper, (10/19/2016, 12:46 PM)

If it is as good as it sounds, it should be used extensively to reduce storm water runoff.


Comment from Tom Schwerdt, (10/20/2016, 8:40 AM)

Porous pavements can be quite good for low-stress areas like pathways and parking lots. They have durability issues on regular roads. The closest we currently have in widespread deployment is "porous friction course" where the top ~1.5" is porous. It's primarily used to improve driver visibility. Random example from a quick web search: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gxab5vdpLxE


Comment from john schultz, (10/20/2016, 9:13 AM)

Won't the porosity lead to subsidence issues? If the water puddles on this it will create a drain effect and washout the soil underneath. Look here for more a better description https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YLZkW3nkAw but it doesn't address long-term benefits over traditional paving


Comment from Tom Schwerdt, (10/21/2016, 8:05 AM)

Yep. I would expect washouts from fully permeable pavement laid directly on soil.


Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

 
 
 

Technology Publishing Co., 1501 Reedsdale Street, Suite 2008, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

TEL 1-412-431-8300  • FAX  1-412-431-5428  •  EMAIL webmaster@durabilityanddesign.com


The Technology Publishing Network

Durability + Design PaintSquare the Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings Paint BidTracker

 

© Copyright 2012-2018, Technology Publishing Co., All rights reserved