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Plastic road first for region

By Fiona Reid
Annan and Eskdale
Plastic road first for region

A NEW eco friendly roads concept is being trialled in Dumfries and Galloway in a bid to make local highways more durable.

The council last week laid a test road containing waste plastic pellets on the C28s Henderland road at Shawhead.
The material for the new surface is the brainchild of Annandale firm MacRebur, who have invented a pioneering new product that replaces some of the bitumen in an asphalt mix.
Their invention meets British standards and has been found to create road surfaces that are more durable and less prone to rutting.
Welcoming the trial, Councillor Archie Dryburgh, chair of the economy, environment and infrastructure committee, said: “As a council we are constantly looking for new, innovative, cost effective ways to improve our services and environment. We were approached a few months ago by MacRebur about their product and asked if we would consider giving it a trial.
“The material works by replacing a percentage of the bitumen content in the mix with a percentage of a product that is derived from recycled plastics. This gives a product that is cheaper, environmentally sustainable and potentially extends the lifespan of road repairs. Recycling operations for road maintenance has been a challenge for many years in D&G, but this type of product will hopefully provide a more sustainable material for maintenance operations for the future.”
Roads officials will now closely monitor the performance of the material and share that data with other local authorities who are also holding trials.
Councillor Dryburgh added: “Innovative materials and companies like MacRebur need to be given an opportunity to develop in order to get a holistic approach as to how local authorities engage with SMEs and how our council approaches more cost effective, sustainable solutions to services.”
Toby McCartney, from MacRebur, said: “Over the last year we’ve been laying roads for local authorities in Cumbria, North Yorkshire and Gloucester and fielding calls and enquiries from around the world, but we’re really delighted to finally get one down here in our home region of Dumfries and Galloway.
“The public locally have been really supportive of our new concept and we’re glad they’re finally getting the chance to drive on a MacRebur road, which we hope will be the first of many in this area.”