Our newest client, Crumb Rubber Manufacturers, is Arizona’s largest recycler of tires. They turn old tires into crumb rubber that is a key component of the asphalt mix used across Arizona on our freeways, streets, and roads.
In 2018, Arizona Department of Transportation released a comprehensive report as part of a 10 year study that compared asphalt rubber against traditional tinning (concrete with grooves cut in the pavement perpendicular to the roadway) and diamond grinding (concrete with grooves cut in the pavement parallel to the roadway). They looked specifically at the tire noise generated with each test section at the tire to roadway interface, adjacent to the freeway, and off freeway in adjacent neighborhoods. The results of the study showed that the asphalt rubber outperformed all other freeway treatments, reducing noise by between 5.5 and 9 dB’s.
The Arizona General Contractors produced a White Paper in 2019 that identified known benefits of using asphalt rubber over the other methods described above. Just a few of those benefits included reduced splash with wet roadways, enhanced skid resistance, and better vehicle gas mileage. However, there were also benefits discovered through subsequent research by other DOT’s and academia that showed a reduction in tire wear, improved air quality, reduced urban heat island, and a life cycle of the asphalt rubber that far exceeded the designed life cycles of 15 years with little to no maintenance being performed.
As you can see, not only is asphalt rubber something the directly benefits the public from a noise stance, but the environmental and extended life cycle make it the most economically viable option for ADOT.