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Watch project managers from Yarra Ranges Council, Frankston City Council and Latrobe City Council discuss their infrastructure projects using recycled materials and products at the Buy Recycled speed dating event.
Sustainability Infrastructure Speed Dating
#2 (Repeat Event)
Wednesday, 7 December 2022
Program Support Officer, Recycled First
Yarr Ranges Council
Frankston City Council
Latrobe City Council
[Opening visual of slide with text saying ‘Microsoft Teams’, ‘Sustainability Infrastructure Speed Dating’, ‘#2 (repeat event)’, ‘2022-12-07 23:11 UTC’, ‘Recorded by Katherine Ponton’, ‘Organised by Katherine Ponton’]
[Visual of slide with text saying ‘Yarra Ranges Council’, ‘Sustainability Infrastructure Speed Dating’, Recycled-Glass Coloured Surface Road Treatment’, ‘Blacksmiths Way, Belgrave & Anderson Street, Lilydale’, ‘Karen O’Gorman’, ‘8 December 2022’, ‘Yarra Ranges respectfully acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land within Yarra Ranges and beyond’]
[The visuals during this webinar are of each speaker presenting in turn via video, with reference to the content of a PowerPoint presentation being played on screen]
I’m Karen O’Gorman and I’m the Special Engineering Projects Coordinator at Yarra Ranges Council which is on Wurundjeri land. And I’d like to thank Sustainability Victoria for the invitation to present some of the lessons that we learnt during the implementation of two projects using glass surface treatment.
So next slide. So just a brief outline of today’s presentation. I’ll start by introducing our two projects then I’ll talk about the materials used, particularly the recycled content, and finally I’ll finish off by highlighting some of the challenges and lessons learnt throughout our projects.
As a brief background to the project these two photos show the two sites prior to treatment. In February 2021 Yarra Ranges received grant funding from Sustainability Victoria which enabled us to install two large projects using recycled glass surface treatment to improve safety. If you can just push the next slide.
So the two projects included an artwork treatment representing water flow along Blacksmith Way in Belgrave as the first stage of an overall plan to activate a previously rundown laneway and enhance walkability and cycling. And the second project was a bike lane along Anderson Street in Lilydale. If you just pop back for a tick. Which is council’s first green bike lane and is expected to be part of a wider network into the future. So both projects used coloured surface treatment by Omni Group. So next slide.
So as part of the procurement process a minimum average of 70% recycled materials was specified in the tender documents. So this limited the number of contractors available and a search on Sustainability Victoria’s Buy Recycled Directory as well as Google identified that Omni Group Direct were the only suitable supplier available that used the high proportion of recycled material.
So the coloured surface treatment itself is a fully compliant, durable and skid resistant treatment which meets the road surface standards across Australia and it uses a minimum of 75% Australian recycled glass and natural aggregates which are combined with a resin binder and comes in a range of colours, which enabled us to achieve the artwork which we desired.
So the two projects helped us reuse about 7.2 tonnes of recycled glass. And feedback from the community highlighted that the treatment has improved connectivity along Blacksmith Way, and within Anderson Street cyclists feel a lot more at ease due to the physical separation of the bike lane and that drivers are now driving a lot closer to the centre lane.
So next slide. But like any new product we faced a lot of challenges throughout the project. As the project required a dry surface the impact of the weather increased the implementation time in both cases. The installation of Blacksmith Way was undertaken in December which was at a time of very high humidity and Anderson Street was undertaken in June and there was frequent rain. Even when it wasn’t raining the contractors even had to spend many hours drying the road which reduced the time available for installation and made it difficult setting expectations with the community as the timelines kept changing.
Also, the time required to dry the resin binder was about three to four hours before it could be safely driven upon. So that reduced the time available within an eight-hour shift period.
So, while there was positive feedback from the community for the use of recycled material, we faced a lot of negative feedback due to the amount of loose aggregate that was released during the installation project and concern that it would further impact the environment. So, to reduce this we had to install some filters within our drainage network and undertake regular street sweeping to reduce the amount of loose aggregate. And it was also identified during the installation of Blacksmith Way that the standard 3mm aggregate was quite rough particularly for dogs. So partway through the project we actually changed the size of the aggregate to 1.5 which was much better catering for pedestrians and dogs.
And the fact that Omni Group were the only supplier to use the high proportion of recycled materials, the higher cost compared to using raw products required justification to council. However, this was actually balanced by the longer lifespan of the project so we were actually able to justify it.
So, I hope this gives you a brief overview of our experience. I’d welcome the opportunity if you’ve got any further questions in the breakout rooms. Thank you.
[Visual of slide with text saying ‘Yarra Ranges Council’, ‘Karen O’Gorman, Coordinator Special Engineering Projects’, ‘9294 6326’, ‘K.OGorman@yarraranges.vic.gov.au’, with an image of the finished laneway project at Blacksmith Way]
Thank you so much Karen. Great presentation and really insightful. And I’m sure you’re going to get heaps of questions, plenty of questions on those projects. Thank you so much. I would now like to invite Jack to tell us about the Brighton Street reconstruction project. Thank you very much Jack.
[Visual of slide with text saying ‘Frankston City Council’, ‘Brighton Street Reconstruction – Sustainability Victoria Partnership’, ‘Frankston City’, ‘opportunity >> growth >> lifestyle’, ‘Presenters: Jack Ellis’]
Thanks Ian. Good morning, everyone. I’m Jack Ellis. I’m a project manager at Frankston City Council. Unfortunately, my colleague Karamveer Singh who actually delivered this project was unable to make it today so you’re stuck with me unfortunately. But I’ll give it a go. Next slide please Ian.
So just an overview of the Brighton Street Project. It was a road reconstruction project which involved a variety of upgrades to different assets including a pedestrian footpath, kerb and channel, road surfacing, indented parking bays, traffic calming devices and line marking and associated road signage. Fortunately, we were able to partner with Sustainability Victoria through their Sustainable Infrastructure Fund. So, we were able to partner with them to I guess trial some of these innovative products. Next slide please.
So, the three recycled products we used included Replas Polyrok Concrete which is a blend of soft plastic mixed in with concrete. Frankston Council was the first council in Australia to use this product and I understand now that there’s a number of other councils out there that are taking advantage of this great product. So that was very exciting for us. The green pipes were 100% high density polyethylene plastic pipes for underground stormwater drainage. And Downer’s Reconophalt Asphalt which is a blend of reclaimed asphalt, soft plastics, printer toner cartridges and glass for the road surface and the intermediate layer within the road pavement. Next slide please.
So, some of the key barriers. In terms of key barriers we didn’t actually experience too many key issues with this project. We were able to use the AS 4000 contract conditions and select or nominate the contractors and subcontractors to utilise these products. So, we did our homework before to work out what would be best for this project and we were able to nominate those suppliers within the contract documents. Next slide please.
So, in terms of the outcome of the project I think overall within our council we’ve grown a lot more comfortable with using these types of products within our projects. We’re starting to look at updating our standard drawings to incorporate different products like this or at least make them available for use. In addition, we’re looking at some of our annual supply contracts like asphalting for example which now incorporates the provision to utilise the Reconophalt products or the recycled asphalt products, which is great. As it says there across other teams and departments of council, we’re spreading the word internally which is good. So, our maintenance teams are starting to become aware of this as well as a number of other areas. And I guess the primary benefit was a large diversion of waste from landfill.
So, you can see there the statistics which are obviously approximated from the suppliers but we’re talking about hundreds of thousands of plastic bags, millions of – well 1.7 million plastic packages in the Polyrok Concrete works. That might be an error. I think that might be for the green pipes instead of the Polyrok Concrete. And 250,000 milk and juice containers I think as part of the Polyrok Concrete. I think they’re supposed to be switched around. But in essence there was a large benefit from undertaking this work and implementing these products. Next slide please.
That is your last slide.
That’s it. Terrific.
Thank you so much Jack. Karamveer would be very proud. It was an excellent presentation and thanks for jumping in when Karamveer couldn’t make it. So thank you so much. Eric you’re up next and we’re going to hear about your recycled crushed glass in asphalt project in Traralgon. Thank you.
[Visual of slide with text saying ‘Recycled Crushed Glass in Asphalt’, ‘Eric Robinson’, ‘Senior Roads Engineer’, ‘Latrobe City’, ‘a new energy’]
Sure. All right. Just to start off I want to acknowledge that Latrobe City sits on traditional land of the Braiakaulung People of the Gunaikurnai Nation and pay respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.
For those who don’t know Latrobe City is about two hours east of Melbourne along the Princes Highway. We’ve got three major towns, Moe, Morwell and Traralgon and several smaller towns. Next slide Ian please.
So just a bit of background to our project. Our recycling contractor DASMA who processes all of our recycling, they had accumulated a large stockpile. So, they went to GHD who are an international engineering firm. They’ve got a local branch in Traralgon. And they went to GHD to talk about what they could possibly do with that. That was all sort of early 2020. And then GHD went to Fowlers, one of our two local contractors. We’ve got a very good relationship with both contractors who do asphalt in the area but Fowlers approached me and then we said sure, we’d be open to a trial. And that led to the SV grants.
But basically work such as this is a big step forward for our local contractors because they don’t have the financial heft that some of the major industries, Boral and Downer and Fulton Hogan have to backstop some of their research. So, this was definitely a big step. Next slide thanks Ian.
Okay. So, for this project we chose an intersection in the middle of Traralgon. Traralgon is home to about 25,000 people. That intersection, it’s got turning and straight movements, it’s got traffic signals, which is one of only two that we’ve got that we control. Any of the others running through the towns are Regional Victoria. And it’s got a deteriorating surface. I’m not sure if you can see but in front of the blue car there there’s some pavement deformation due to traffic running and there’s cracks.
And so basically the project involved 110mm deep lift asphalt with 10% recycled reclaimed asphalt which brought in about 25 tonnes of recycled content. And then we had a 40mm asphalt overlay that was designed to have 15% recycled glass which was another sort of 40 tonnes of recycled glass and recycled content in there. And then within that also was replacement of the line marking and the traffic signal loops, which again is a novel part of the project for us. Not something we get to deal with very often. Next slide thank you.
All right. So works were completed overnight, over three nights in February. The first two nights were taking out the existing pavement that was there and they replaced the structural asphalt base layer, and then the third night they put the glass mix down and did the line marking at the same time. The traffic loops were done a couple of days after. We did have 15% in the design mix but when it came time to actually put the asphalt on the ground the works area was slightly larger than what we’d actually originally measured out and so we had to reduce the percentage of the glass because we only had a finite amount of glass. So we actually ended up using only 12.5% glass in the mix. Next slide please Ian.
Thank you. And so, throughout the project there were just a couple of roadblocks. As I mentioned earlier the quantity of glass was an issue on short term notice. But even in the lead up with the planning DASMA provided some glass samples that just weren’t suitable. They were too large, too may contaminants. So we did actually search around and see if we could find some from a supplier in Melbourne but that actually came in at an extra $50 a tonne which is about 40% more. So it’s not a route we really wanted to go down. So we kept pushing DASMA to get material up to scratch, which they did do in time, and then Fowlers were great at doing a whole lot of testing at their lab here to make sure it met all the standards that it needed to.
I had a couple of conversations with our internal procurement team about why I was using one contractor and not the other. But once we had worked around why we were using Fowlers, that it was a trial and our earlier contractor wasn’t ready to try this material yet, they were happy with that. Yeah. I believe that’s about it for that one.
Yeah. And so moving forward Fowlers has actually been purchased by Downer. So now they’re picking up some of that financial backing that Downer can provide which opens the door to their product Reconophalt which Jack and Karen have used in their projects. We’ve actually already used it in two locations for some patching and we’re going to be using in a few jobs for some of our asphalt overlays this coming year. We also did trial Bitumen Crumb Rubber which there were opportunities for grants from Tyre Stewardship but we missed that boat so we funded it ourselves. It was slightly more expensive but that also comes with some limitations around asphalt plants. And also in the last week I’ve also had discussions with RMIT about doing a trial mix with some soft plastics in asphalt as well. So we’re really trying to push sustainability as much as we can here at Latrobe and so far I’ve been lucky I’ve got the backing of my bosses to do that as well.
But yeah. That’s it. Thanks for your time.
Fantastic. Thanks heaps Eric. That was a really good presentation, really good insights there, and especially lots of detail around those products that you used and the complications that you may have had during the project. So yeah. Thanks heaps for that. That’s brilliant.
So now we’re on to the speed dating part of the session where Katherine is going to work her magic on Teams and put us through to some breakout rooms. Just a few points on the breakout rooms. So like I said before everyone will be put into a room and the presenters will rotate through the rooms. So you’ll definitely have a chance to ask each of the presenters the burning questions that you have about their projects. We’re not recording this part of the session. So we encourage you to keep your cameras on so we can see your faces, your smiling faces. And also feel free to speak freely. We’re not recording anything. So that’s good.
[End of Transcript]