Plastic is fantastic or driving is thriving

Road surfaces made from pet bottles and plastic waste. Who would ever have thought it possible. Why are we still using the same old materials for road-surfacing? We could build our roads with smarter construction materials and recycle our waste. That’s what Anne Koudstaal and Simon Jorritsma, Dutch KWS consultants, asked themselves.

KWS PlasticRoad

KWS PlasticRoad

Image: KWS PlasticRoad

They came up with an alternative for asphalt, steel and concrete. “What road-users and statutory authorities really want is a road surface that lasts, is quick to build, requires little maintenance and is safe. Our current roads are built to last 50 years and need regular maintenance. That means frequent delays and spiralling costs.”

Ingenious idea

KWS came up with the idea of a light, modular design with a hollow interior. This allows drain-off of rainwater and provides space for cables. Recycled plastic turned out to be ideal for the design of the ‘PlasticRoad’.

Knowledge of plastic

PlasticRoad lasts three times longer than traditional roads and building them is 80% faster. This attracts widespread interest. KWS’s aim is to implement a pilot scheme in the public domain and develop the PlasticRoad further.

They are talking to partners and experts with a knowledge of plastics. And looking into possibilities of using plastic waste from the oceans. Plastic waste collected by local authorities would show the value of waste sorting at first hand in your own neighbourhood.

Circular economy

The Dutch with their character and attitude of reinvention have undertaken to achieve a 100% circular economy 2050. We see it as crucial for economic growth, but moreover that it improves the well-being of society as a whole.

Netherlands intends to become a living lab, generating and disseminating information on the transformation into a future-proof world. The Netherlands has launched the Netherlands Circular Hotspot(NLCH) so that we can leave behind a liveable earth for future generations.