UT Arlington building parking lots with plastic roads

Construction is underway on some new parking lots at UT Arlington that uses recycled plastics in the roads.

The parking lot, located just south of the Business Building on campus, will incorporate two tons of recycled plastics into the asphalt.

For comparison, 2 tons of uncrushed plastics is more than 7 recycle garbage trucks full. 


The material is expected to prolong the life of the lot from about 10 years to 20 years, while also reducing maintenance and keep plastics out of landfills.

UT Arlington civil engineering professor Sahadat Hossain received a grant from TXDOT for the project.

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"It creates an environmental solution for plastic," said Hossain. "Plastic is a waste."

He says the method could save TXDOT even more on pavement maintenance costs.

"For TXDOT or any other agency if they use plastic roads their maintenance drops. If you are maintaining every two years it will become every 5 years," said Hossain.

UTA is expected to use the technology on multiple parking lots around campus using some different mixes. The lots will be studied based on how the lots are used.

The university says they believe even though the new surface costs more money upfront that it will save them money in the long run.

The first plastic road implementation project will be in the Kaufman area.