Fast draining car park surface for college campus

Solihull, West Midlands



Solihull College



Location type



November 2017

The challenge

Solihull College needed to increase parking capacity for students and staff at their Blossomfield Campus and commissioned a new 5,500m2 car park. Local planning guidelines encouraged a sustainable approach to drainage to avoid excessive run-off into the local catchment. It would be used throughout the year, so there was also a requirement to avoid standing water during heavy rain. As it would be in frequent use by large numbers of staff and students, the chosen surfacing needed to provide long term durability with minimal maintenance requirement.

Our solution

After discussions with the main contractor, Tarmac’s experienced team recommended ULTIDRIVE POROUS, their specialist porous asphalt car park surface. The chosen solution was a 10mm ULTIDRIVE POROUS surface course laid at 30mm depth, over a 32mm ULTIDRIVE POROUS base/binder course laid at a depth of 100mm. Using a modified binder and open aggregate structure, ULTIDRIVE POROUS combines excellent drainage characteristics with long term durability. It reduces direct surface water run-off to help meet planning requirements. It also eliminates the problem of both standing water after heavy rain and ice patches that can occur in cold weather conditions.

Results and benefits

Around 380 tonnes of ULTIDRIVE POROUS surface course and 1300 tonnes of binder course was supplied.It was laid by Tarmac Contracting over five days during early November. The product performed well on site, with the modified binder helping to maintain workability and achieve the correct level of compaction. The smooth, even finish met the client’s requirement for a safe, low maintenance, all weather surface.”The material does what it says on the tin in relation to the instant absorption of any water that comes into contact with the new surface. It drains instantly leaving no puddles and that in turn stops any chances of freezing water causing slip hazards in the winter months for the footfall of students using this educational centre” Andy James, Colas Midlands Contracting.

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Additional info

Safe all weather car park surface

Porous asphalt surface eliminated standing water to reduce flooding and ice formation. This made it safer for college staff and students.

Avoided extended site closure

Completed quickly avoiding long term disruption due to the college site, the durable finish also minimised future maintenance requirement.

Sustainable drainage

Met planning requirements by reducing surface run-off and the risk of overwhelming local drainage systems.

Asphalt contact