Asphalt roads get their strength from the quality of the subgrade, base course and asphalt layers. The subgrade and base course are layers with varying degrees of manufactured gravels. Subgrade has very little manufacturing and is generally made up of natural soils, that are good for road building, mixed with some uncrushed rock. Compacted well, it helps support the base course and asphalt. Base course is manufactured and, when compacted well, it helps to support the asphalt layer while allowing water to drain away from the pavement and subgrade. Complete reconstruction involves removing the existing asphalt, base course and subgrade and reinstalling with new material.
Water is the biggest challenge in the health of a road. Over time, when the pavement cracks, water can weaken the base course and subgrade. When the layers beneath the pavement get weak, the pavement breaks up under the traffic load and that’s what is happening on 19 Street. Complete reconstruction will provide new subgrade and base course to support the brand-new pavement.