Monache High School Parking Lot and Solar Panel Installation, Porterville, CA. The district facility director commented that the cost of the concrete was more expensive than 3” of asphalt but paid for itself in 10-15 years.
Documents and Resources
- Project Profile – Monache High School Parking Lot with Solar
- Long-Life Concrete: How Long Will My Concrete Last? – NCPTC
- Project Profile – Pacific Gas and Electric, Distribution Yard
- Article – Concrete Parking Areas Aren’t White, They’re GREEN
- Project Profile – McDonalds Parking Lot, Castro Valley
- Article – Building Concrete Parking Lots
The Concrete Solution for Parking Lots
Concrete parking lots offer excellent performance compared to asphalt pavements. A variety of textures and color enhancement can add to the value of parking areas for retail, commercial and residential building owners. Long recognized for its durability and strength, concrete requires much less maintenance than other materials and provides environmental benefits including lower energy costs for lighting, enhanced safety, can be recycled, and is cost effective. Concrete parking lots are like money in the bank!
Benefits of Using Concrete for Parking Lots
• Concrete pavements can carry heavy loads without rutting or developing potholes.
• Concrete’s rigidity and high strength provide the same load-carrying capacity in a thinner section than traditional paving materials.
Concrete surfaces are much lighter in color, meaning that lighting costs can be reduced—you can eliminate 3 of 10 light fixtures and still have the same level of lighting, according to the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association. This creates a safer parking lot and also reduces energy costs.
Concrete parking lots are green—runoff is low toxicity and cooler than from dark surfaces and the concrete can contain recycled materials (fly ash, slag,). All this can yield LEED credits.
The lighter color also results in a lower temperature for the parking area, reducing the heat-island effect and lowering cooling costs for adjacent buildings. Ambient air temperatures above a concrete parking lot can be as much as 10° cooler than an asphalt lot.
• Maintenance costs for concrete are nearly zero requiring occasional joint sealing and annual cleaning. This means no business interruptions with concrete parking.
• Concrete parking lots can be colored and textured.
• Over the typical 20-year life of a parking lot, concrete will have very little maintenance expense while maintenance for an asphalt lot will be considerably more costly.
Concrete or Asphalt
Do you want to compare designs of concrete or asphalt parking lots? Here’s a software program that quickly and accurately quantifies the differences between concrete and asphalt pavements. Using ACI and Asphalt Institute recommendations, CPA compares total ownership costs, providing specifiers the information they need to make sound pavement decisions.
Order Concrete Pavement Analyst (CPA) software here. http://www.concretepromotion.org/downloads/CPA2008.pdf