Recycled Roads Are Rolling Out In Victoria!

Sep 10, 2021by Olivia - F&F

In Victoria, crushed glass, rubber tyres and kerbside waste are being used to aggregate roads! Let’s take a closer look at these amazing projects.

Great Alpine Road VictoriaGreat Alpine Road Victoria

Mount Hotham Alpine Resort’s Recycled Glass Roads

The snowy, picturesque Mount Hotham Alpine Resort —  located in Victoria’s east, is way ahead of the sustainability curve! The business has been exploring different ways to manage its 60-70 tonnes of annual glass waste. 

According to Operations Manager, Nick Malkin, the total cost of transporting the masses of glass down the hill and getting it recycled was more than $20,000. So, they decided to take matters into their own hands! 

"We bought a pulveriser, and use the glass as a resource for aggregating roads, concrete, and also using as a grit on the road during icy weather," Malkin said in an ABC News article. "We're not too far away from having a true circular economy up here. We're diverting about 70 per cent to 80 per cent of our waste away from landfill at this point,” he said.

Latrobe City Council Rubber RoadsLatrobe City Council Rubber Roads

Latrobe City Council’s Recycled Rubber Roads

Again, in Victoria’s east, Latrobe City Council has experimented with a mixture called ‘crumb rubber’. It sounds bizarre, but the mixture contains recycled rubber from car tyres! Some streets in Morwell have been resurfaced using the mixture, which is actually helping to keep tyres out of landfill.

According to Planet Ark, roughly 48 million tyres are disposed of across Australia each year, but only 16 per cent are recycled domestically. Mayor Sharon Gibson says that using the crumb rubber mixture is a win-win scenario. 

"You're using old car tyres that — instead of going into landfill — are actually going into the bitumen. We're looking every way we can to recycle to make it so that we're not sending so much to landfill," Gibson said in an ABC News article.

Hume Freeway Recycled AsphaltHume Freeway Recycled Asphalt

Hume Freeway’s Recycled Asphalt

An 850m stretch of Hume Freeway, located near Euroa in Victoria’s northeast, is set to be rebuilt using recycled materials! More than 2,100 tonnes of recycled materials will be processed by Wodonga Asphalt Plant — including around 1 million recycled glass bottles, 746,000 plastic bags, 420 tonnes of reclaimed asphalt, and 21,800 printer cartridges!

Compared to traditional road surfaces, the mix of recycled materials can withstand heavy traffic better — meaning that it will last longer! “By diverting this waste from landfill and putting it into road projects like this, we’re taking the pressure off our precious natural resources,” says Minister for Roads and Road Safety, Ben Carroll. Plus, Member for Northern Victoria, Jaclyn Symes, says “Not only will this new surface help us cut down on waste, it will also last longer than traditional asphalt — giving us more value for money in our road maintenance program.”

Stockland Minta Reconophalt RoadStockland Minta Reconophalt Road

Recycled Roads In Melbourne’s New Residential Community

A new residential community being built in Berwick— called Minta — will feature more than two kilometres of road made with recycled asphalt mix! The environmentally friendly asphalt, called Reconophalt, will utilise over 1,356,000 plastic bags, 39,610 printer cartridges and 724 tonnes of recycled asphalt. 

The project’s developer, Stockland, says that they’re committed to using sustainable materials. Plus, the company has committed to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2028. 

“This environmental initiative is one of the first of many Stockland projects that will be using recycled asphalt — helping grow our communities while being as kind to the environment as possible,” says Stockland Project Director, Kerry Balci.

What do you think of these amazing road projects? In the future, we’d love to see more roads made from recycled materials. It’s a practical way to divert ‘waste’ from landfill and turn it into something new — plus, the recycled materials are often stronger than traditional asphalt!

If you’re keen to read about more recycling initiatives throughout Australia, head to the Eco News category and check out the blogs below!

‘Re’ Is Set To Become Australia’s Forst Zero Waste Bar

Here’s How Scientists Are Transforming Food Scraps Into Building Materials

Junk Fest | The Town That Turns Trash Into Treasure

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