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Maine Alliance for Road Associations

Road surface materials

  • 14 Sep 2023 1:49 PM
    Message # 13254571

    Our 10 lot subdivision HOA must regrade and crown the first 300 ft. entrance portion of the unpaved roads. This section is very steep making erosion a chronic issue. Built originally 35 years ago with "rotten rock" surface and refurbished most recently 4 years ago with "Acadia Mix", both materials have benefits and downsides.  Are there any recommendations for the best surface material in this situation, - rotten rock, Acadia mix, minus 1 crushed ledge, reclaimed asphalt, other?

  • 14 Sep 2023 6:16 PM
    Reply # 13254727 on 13254571
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    You may wish to attend our Conference on Oct 7th, virtually on Zoom, and ask your question of our speaker on the “How to’s” of road maintenance, John Maclaine. Check out our Events Page!

    Last modified: 14 Sep 2023 6:17 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
  • 11 Oct 2023 11:54 AM
    Reply # 13265963 on 13254571

    I researched about the material you used. It appears it's only available in one location in Maine. Whereas we had a section of our road way that had a sharp curve and hills at both ends so we used stone dust. It permanently resolved our constant repairs to that section. Just be aware that after applying stone dust to use a calcium chloride spray on it. The spray will help prevent it from blowing away.

  • 12 Oct 2023 10:13 AM
    Reply # 13266418 on 13254571
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    At the MARA Conference, DEP gravel road expert John Maclaine recommended crushed bluestone, well packed, as being a good solution for problematic stretches of road.  Also, of course, there is the importance of good drainage. 

    Does that section of road have sufficient ditching so the the water has somewhere to travel other than down the road surface?  If there isn't enough width to provide sufficient ditching, or if there isn't enough depth of material to create ditches without hitting ledge, It's possible that the best you can do is build up the road and crown it well so the water at least stays to the edges of the road.  A "broad-based dip" above the top of the hill can help limit how much water goes down the hill from the top.  Also, if you can put in turnouts anywhere, that can help reduce the amount of water that runs down the hill.  Reducing the volume of runoff will help reduce erosion. 

    Our road has sections where there is ledge just a few inches down, so ditching isn't an option.  We have just added material to the road to raise the crown, and have cleared out a couple of turnouts besides the one above the broad based dip at the top.  Hopefully that will improve the situation.

  • 15 Oct 2023 12:14 PM
    Reply # 13267496 on 13254571

    Stone dust has not been considered but may be especially appropriate at a steep driveway intersection mid way on the steep road.  Crushed bluestone recommendation supports a previous choice of "Acadia Mix", presumably some version of it, for the main road area.  Given culverts, ditches and turnouts are in place, the now very thin surface layer that can barely be graded / crowned is the problem, requiring a significant amount of top material.

    Thank you both for the information, and ongoing appreciation for all those whose work makes MARA's remarkable resources available.

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