Civil Engineering - Roads
This project was a huge success, the road performed better through rain, snow and heavy traffic than ever before. The County saved money because they did not have to purchase as much conventional sub-grade material.
Chautauqua County in New York had a huge scrap tire problem. Numerous illegal tire dumps within the county threatened the environment and the people around it, something had to be done. After searching the internet, the county found information on the tire baler and liked the beneficial use of the end product. The county, being a public entity, placed a bid for a tire baler, Encore Systems, Inc. won the competitive bidding process and the county purchased one of their tire balers. The county utilized county jail inmates to bale the tires. By the year 2000 the county baled over 400,000 tires hassle free and with outstanding performance reports on the machinery.
The end use of the tire bales was what really excited the county and has the interest of the State of New York. The county received a Research Development and Demonstration Permit for this "new technology". Mr. Ken Smith, Deputy Director of the Chautauqua County Public Works was trying to find methods of dealing with the soft, clay-type soils prevalent to the area. Roads were not draining, frost damage was occurring, and the soft, wet soils do not hold the load! The first project began in 1999 reconstructing 1,000 feet of gravel road and utilizing 200,000 tires in baled form. This project was a huge success, the road performed better through rain, snow and heavy traffic than ever before. The County saved money because they did not have to purchase as much conventional sub-grade material. The tire bales have a large load bearing capacity. The bales have two other benefits for this application. Water migrates through the bales, making the road free draining. The tires also insulate, protecting the road sub-base from frost. Because of the excellent results from the gravel road, Mr. Smith completed a paved road of 200 feet in the fall of 2000 using 36,000 tires. Engineers are monitoring the road surfaces for any deflections through the winter and next year. The county received a Beneficial Use Determination which should make this method open statewide.
As of 2005, Chautaugua County has completed 7 roads. Contact Encore Systems for a complete report of monitored success of these roads.