If you’re the owner of a business and you plan on paving a parking lot near your building, there are a few things you need to consider before going ahead with your plans. Of course, your likely first move is going to be looking for a contractor to come and pour some asphalt or concrete for you, but this isn’t always the smartest option.
Both asphalt and concrete come with some hidden risk factors and expenses that make them not only less environmentally-friendly, but more expensive and potentially dangerous as well.
Parking Lot Paving Considerations
In case you’re thinking about paving a parking lot, let’s break down the process, how much it’s going to cost you now and in the future, and what some possible alternatives are.
1. The Cost is Higher Than You Think
Paving a parking lot can be more expensive than you might think. Beyond the surface, there are base preparation, stormwater management -storage, drainage, and filtering, and striping considerations. Depending on the size of your parking lot, you’d probably expect to set aside a few hundred or maybe even a thousand, right? Wrong.
Cheap asphalt is just that. It tends to tear up quickly. Also, your city may require pervious surface offset as asphalt is an impervious surface. For larger sites this means construction of a detention pond- a very expensive proposition in terms of both land costs, construction costs and long term maintenance. The same goes for concrete lots which last longer than asphalt but can be 2 to 3 times as expensive to build.
Both asphalt and concrete parking lots aren’t just one-time expenses. Potholes, cracks, faded lot lines, ugly stains and ponding, standing water are all part of your daily experience with asphalt and concrete. Both ugly and costly to fix.
Hot sun during the long summer days will soften your asphalt parking lot as well, making it harder to drive around in and slightly sticky to the touch. Concrete is in the same situation when it comes to long-term durability. Chipping, cracks, and faded lines are all in your near future, as well as the cost to fix them.
2. Asphalt and Concrete are Harmful to the Environment
While they aren’t on the level of giant, coal-fueled cruise liners and diesel semi-trucks, both concrete and asphalt parking lots have a negative impact on the environment. This is because the equipment, machinery, and fuel needed to transport and install them all have high greenhouse gas emission levels.
The companies who sell and install these types of parking lots generally aren’t very concerned about their carbon footprint, and the environmental impact of their business is given little if any thought at all.
In addition to this, it takes far longer to install a concrete or asphalt parking lot than it does to install something like a gravel parking lot with permeable pavers. The manpower, hours, and expertise needed for concrete and asphalt are far greater than a cheaper install like permeable pavers.
3. Permeable Pavers Provide an Excellent Alternative
If you’re looking to install a parking lot that is less expensive, just as durable, better for the environment, and less costly over the long-run, you should consider permeable pavers like the kind that TRUEGRID offers. The hidden benefit for owners and developers is land savings. Using a 100% pervious system, you paved area will not count against your impervious surface. What does this mean for you? A bigger building or more parking spaces to create greater value for your business.
Permeable pavers like this absorb rainwater instantly. Auto spills filter directly through them removing pollutants naturally by infiltration into the soil and bioremediation. They do this while providing a durable and attractive parking lot for you and your customers.
Permeable pavers are not vulnerable to high heat and will not break down over time, unlike concrete and asphalt. They are also far cheaper and faster to install because they are lightweight despite being super strong, require no special tools or machinery and can be installed at over 1000 square feet per man-hour.
Fast, easy , permeable. Cost and land savings. Naturally attractive. No matter how you slice it, permeable pavers like TRUEGRID are far cheaper than asphalt or concrete, yet outperform them across the board in almost every measurable variable.
Parking Lot Technology Has Evolved
Whether you’re looking for a residential grass parking lot, a commercial parking lot, or an industrial parking lot, there’s a different type of permeable paver for every situation. And when it comes to eco-friendliness, they can’t be beaten.
Manufactured via sustainable methods, these pavers are classified as low impact construction working with Mother Nature, unlike asphalt and concrete. You’ll also never have to install additional drainage around your parking lot because the parking lot itself is a drainage system with permeable pavers.
When it comes down to it, paving a parking lot in 2019 or beyond with asphalt or concrete is probably not the best or most cost-effective choice.
Permeable pavers like the ones produced by TRUEGRID are able to handle anything you throw at them, last longer than other more expensive materials, are more eco-friendly, and cost less in the short-term and long-term to install and maintain.