Investigation of Pavement Permeability: Old Bridge Road

Report No: 02-TAR5

Published in 2001

About the report:

Several instances of wet pavement and pavement icing on Old Bridge Road were reported to VDOT's Lake Ridge Area Headquarters when no new precipitation had fallen. The pavement structure appears to hold water. This water seeps to the surface at a number of isolated locations for several days after a rainfall event. The section was paved in 2000 with a Superpave1/2 in (12.5 mm) nominal maximum aggregate size mix with a PG 70-22 binder (SM-12.5D). Cores were taken from the right-hand travel lane in February 2001 in an attempt to identify the problem. The cores were tested for permeability, density, asphalt content, and gradation. The cores indicated that the pavement was permeable and generally failed in-place density requirements. Therefore, in April 2001, the center and left lanes were cored in a random manner to assess density and permeability. Field permeability tests were performed on site. The coring indicated that the pavement generally failed in-place density requirements. Where the pavement failed VDOT's minimum pavement density, the pavement was permeable. Areas that indicated segregation were more permeable. Although the hot-mix asphalt was a Superpave design, it was not a coarse-graded Superpave design and was not significantly different from the contractor's previous Marshall design. A strong relationship among pavement density, gradation, and permeability (in both the laboratory and the field) was developed from the data.

Disclaimer Statement:The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


  • Brian D. Prowell

Last updated: December 4, 2023

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