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RCC Public Streets Are Budget Savior for Pennsylvania City

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When a section of Sycamore Street in Nazareth, PA, had completely failed due to inadequate pavement strength, the road was so cracked it looked like a dried creek bed. After assessing a variety of paving and repair options, the consulting engineer worked with Ken Crank of the Pennsylvania Concrete Promotion Council to specify roller-compacted concrete (RCC) for the new road. RCC was chosen for its high strength and low cost. These benefits were illustrated by decades-old RCC roads in neighboring Ohio, as well as other northern locations in the U.S. and Canada, including areas where pavements are subject to freeze-thaw. Sycamore Street is believed to be the first public street RCC project in Pennsylvania.

The pavement section consisted of 3 inches of stone base, followed by 6 inches of RCC, with a 1.5-inch asphalt wearing surface, for a 1,728 square yard project. The final price was $70,000. The consulting engineer estimated that an equivalent strength asphalt design would have cost about 30 percent more than RCC, from $99,000 to $116,000. The Pennsylvania concrete industry continues to work with PennDOT to develop a RCC pavement specification. 

Source: Portland Cement Association's Executive Report e-newsletter for August 27. View a video capturing the placement at

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