Comparative Environmental Assessment of Rigid, Flexible, and Perpetual Pavements: A Case Study of Texas Academic Article uri icon


  • Unlike conventional pavements with a service life of 20~30 years, perpetual pavements (PPs) are designed to have a 50-year service life without requiring major maintenance and rehabilitation (M&R) activities. In this way, PPs are more cost-effective than conventional rigid pavements (CRPs) and conventional flexible pavements (CFPs). Nonetheless, even though the economic and mechanical aspects of PPs have been widely studied and well documented, the literature is limited regarding the environmental assessment of PPs. Consequently, this research estimated the environmental burden associated with five pavement structures (one CRP, one CFP, and three PP structures) through the life-cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Notably, the PaLATE computational tool was used to carry out the LCAs. The results indicated that for CFP, most of the environmental impacts are generated by the M&R activities. Otherwise, for CRP and PP structures, the most impact occurred during the initial construction stage. The study results also revealed that materials production is the sub-stage that most contributed to the generation of environmental detriments. Overall, this comparative case study concluded that the pavement alternative with the slightest environmental damage is the PP structure.

published proceedings

  • Sustainability

author list (cited authors)

  • Walubita, L. F., Martinez-Arguelles, G., Polo-Mendoza, R., Ick-Lee, S., & Fuentes, L.

citation count

  • 25

publication date

  • August 2022