Concrete Pavement Design, Construction, and Performance

Concrete Pavement Design, Construction, and Performance

Concrete pavements have been used for highways, airports, streets, local
roads, parking lots, industrial facilities, and other types of infrastructure.
When properly designed and built out of durable materials, concrete pavements
can provide many decades of service with little or no maintenance.
“Concrete generally has a higher initial cost than asphalt but lasts longer
and has lower maintenance costs” (Hoel and Short 2006: 26).
In some cases, however, design or construction errors or poorly selected
materials have considerably reduced pavement life. It is therefore important
for pavement engineers to understand materials selection, mixture
proportioning, design and detailing, drainage, construction techniques, and
pavement performance. It is also important to understand the theoretical
framework underlying commonly used design procedures, and to know the
limits of applicability of the procedures.

There are a number of different types of concrete pavements that have been
built. However, for the most part, they have two features in common. First,
they resist traffic loads through flexure of the concrete. If reinforcement is
used, it is used for crack control and not to carry load. The second element
is that concrete pavements contract due to drying shrinkage of the concrete,
and expand and contract due to thermal effects, and these movements must
be dealt with. Different types of pavements use joints, reinforcing steel,
or both.
The term “conventional concrete pavements” is generally taken to mean
either jointed plain, jointed reinforced, or continuously reinforced concrete
pavements (the first three categories described below) but not other types.
Design and detailing of joints is important for these pavements. All three
conventional pavement types have been used as overlays, although jointed
plain overlays are most common.
Prestressed and precast concrete pavements are used for similar applications
as conventional concrete pavements, but have been used infrequently.
Other types of concrete pavement include roller compacted concrete (RCC)
and pervious or porous concrete, which are generally used for specialized
industrial or parking lot applications.


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