Recycled Plastic Kerbstones Trial In Wokingham
Kerbstones made from recycled plastics will be trialled in Wokingham borough. The innovative scheme will be run by Wokingham Borough Council alongside its highways contractor Volker Highways. Using plastic kerbs reduces the amount of carbon produced in manufacturing, transport and construction by about 40 per cent compared to concrete kerbing.
Plastic kerbing, which looks almost identical to concrete kerbs, contains about 88 per cent recycled material and is cut with hand tools so, unlike concrete, it does not create crystalline silica dust. As the kerbs weigh less than traditional materials, it also reduces handling injury risks and can be installed without the need for mechanical equipment.
Recycled Plastic Kerbstones Locations
This can help to speed up installation, as well as being environmentally friendly. Initial locations for the trials will be:
- Elm Road, Earley
- Old Forest Road, Wokingham
- Easthampstead Road, Wokingham
These locations have been chosen as they are high-use areas, particularly by HGVs, where kerbs have previously been damaged. The plastic kerbs will be installed in small areas on these roads to see how they stand up to use, and will be monitored over a period of time.
The council may also look to trial other areas, such as drop kerbs for new access points, to see how they perform. As part of the trial the council will review the performance and resilience of the kerbing along with the environmental benefits.
“I am excited by our trials of this innovative type of kerbing,” said Cllr Pauline Jorgensen, executive member for highways and transport. “We are looking for ways to make our services greener and this solution allows us to find an effective use of recycled materials while carrying out important highway maintenance across our network.”
It follows on from the success of the council’s on-going greenways project, where material using up to 75 per cent former rubber tyre has been used to lay new surfaces for walkers, cyclists and horse riders.
These have been installed in locations such as Dinton Pastures and California Country Park, as well as on footpaths and byways across the borough.
“Exploring further use of recycled products like these kerb stones are the type of changes we are looking into as we aim to be a carbon neutral borough by 2030,” said Cllr Gregor Murray, executive member for climate emergency.
“I look forward to reviewing the success of these trials to see if the kerbing could be rolled out to other locations in the future.”