As early as 625 B.C., Babylon used asphalt for roadway construction, but asphalt roads were not built in America or Europe until much later. In the early 1700s, road construction processes began to improve. John Metcalf, who was English, focused on creating construction layers that allowed the road material to drain. Beginning in 1803, Thomas Telford built roads with broken stone in Scotland. Eventually, other builders utilized hot tar to help bind stone.
A French highway that was constructed in 1852 provided design ideas for the first asphalt road in America, which was compiled from natural asphalt in 1870. Before 1907, most asphalt from came from asphalt lakes. However, composite mixes started to be produced that surpassed the use of natural asphalt.
History of Asphalt Paving – United States
As automobiles became popular, the government tried to meet the public’s desire for better streets. Logan Weller Page was instrumental in introducing the idea of roadway testing. Inventions to improve the application of asphalt included mixers and dryers. In 1901, Warren Brothers opened a facility in Massachusetts that had many materials that are still used to make asphalt in modern times.
In the 1970s, the energy crisis began to increase awareness about preserving natural resources. Asphalt could be recycled, which made it a cost-effective, desirable paving material.
Asphalt continues to be an exceptionally sturdy building material today. However, as early builders realized, proper installation and preparation is key to its durability. LDC Paving, serving the Houston, Texas area, knows the importance of prepping and preparing a surface before starting an asphalt job. Our reliable contractors can provide asphalt paving overlays, sealcoating, crack repair, striping, and other traffic flow devices. Call LDC Paving for your project. Dial 832-640-7296, or request a quote by completing our online form.