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FACT #01

Perpetual Pavements

Perpetual asphalt pavements have actually been built in the U.S. for generations – even before engineers articulated the concept.

Although the Perpetual Pavement concept was first articulated in 2000, many asphalt pavements that were constructed long ago function as Perpetual Pavements. For example, many full-depth and deep-strength pavements were built around the country in the 1960s and 1970s.

The Asphalt Pavement Alliance instituted the Perpetual Pavement Award program in 2001 to recognize DOTs and other owners of pavements that had the foresight to build pavements according to these principles. To qualify for the award, the pavement must be at least 35 years old and must have never had a structural failure.

The first winner of a Perpetual Pavement Award was the New Jersey Turnpike, which was 50 years old at that time. Between 2001 and 2011, a total of 80 pavements qualified for the award. Winners include interstate highways, rural roads, city streets, and airport runways. The easternmost winner is in Connecticut, and the westernmost is on one of the Aleutian Islands in Alaska.