More than 48-50 kilometers of road in Jamshedpur is made using plastic. Yes, you read that right.
What started as a pilot project by the Jamshedpur Utilities and Services Company (JUSCO), a Tata Enterprise, two years ago is now reshaping the way roads are built by utlising plastic waste.
According to ANI, plastic bottles, packets, wrappers, etc, are collected from all over Jamshedpur and brought to 10 collection centres in the city.
Using a unique technique, the waste is shredded to 2 mm to 4 mm thick material. This material is used to bind the construction mix.
Use of plastic in road construction ensures that the life of a road is extended by 50 percent, while bringing down the cost of road construction.
Gaurav Anand, Senior Manager (Quality Assurance) of JUSCO and an environment engineer, claims that no maintenance cost is involved for the first five years. Use of plastic in road construction also saves bitumen.
Anand, who is an environment engineer, said that for every stretch of such one km long and four metre wide road, one tonne of bitumen costing Rs.50,000 is saved.
A technician, P. Dandpad, said, “When a road is constructed, first the aggregate is put in the traumeel and heated at 160 degrees. Shredded plastic is sprayed on it which laminates the aggregate, which reduces the water absorbing capacity of the road to zero.”
He also informed that such a road is water resistant, has higher softening point, can withstand high temperature and higher load, has lower penetration value, costs less as compared to bitumen road and has no toxic gas emission.
“This technique not only improves the quality of roads but also helps rid the city of plastic waste, which was once an enigma,” said Ashish Mathur, managing director, of JUSCO.
But there is no plan of introducing this technology to other cities. JUSCO says it is in no mood to commercialize the idea even though Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand are among others who have expressed interest.