Time saving road realignment, busy tourist location

A379 Slapton Sands Causeway, Devon



Devon County Council


Alun Griffiths

Location type

Main road


October 2018

The challenge

Slapton Sands Causeway is a main link to Slapton Strete Gate and Torcross in a very popular tourist destination. However, it is very close to the sea defences and in March 2018 was partially destroyed by Storm Emma. This resulted in the link road to be closed requiring the residents to drive an extra 45 minutes to each town with an estimated 2,500 vehicles using this everyday. The decision was made to realign the link road and move this inland by 10 metres. The area is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) it was declared a National Nature Reserve (NNR) in 1993 and is home to a number of rare plant and animal species. This protected area is in a very secluded part of Devon with very little main road network to transport materials and new way of construction was needed to minimise road movements and disruption.

Our solution

Devon CC and Alun Griffiths approached Tarmac’s Technical Product Support Manager to discuss value engineering the project. A collaborative meeting by all parties discussed the challenges of using conventional materials. 14mm ULTIFASTPAVE was offered as a single layer solution over the conventional two layer binder course and surface course approach. Using a single layer material would help reduce the construction depth and minimise vehicle movements and reduce the timescale of the project to join the two communities as quickly as possible. ULTIFASTPAVE is a versatile single layer solution designed to be a low void surface and binder course, combining high strength and long lasting performance.

Results and benefits

As planned, 14mm ULTIFASTPAVE was delivered to site and laid over 6,500m2. Using this approach saved 400 tonnes of binder course and avoided 20 HGV movements over the duration of the scheme. It also avoided the need to use a bond coat, saving time and simplifying the programme. This resulted in a cost saving of around £30k. The client was delighted with the outcome and the scheme won the Chartered institution of Highways & Transportation South West Transportation Environment award and Transport Project of the Year award.“I am absolutely delighted that the replacement of this road has been achieved so quickly. Local residents and businesses rely heavily on the ease of access between Strete Gate and Torcross” Councillor Richard Foss, South Hams District Council Ward Member for Allington and Strete.

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Additional info

Innovative, award winning scheme

Using innovative single layer construction helped this scheme win an environmental construction award.

Reduction in materials and vehicle movements

Saving of 400 tonnes of binder course and 20 vehicle journeys.

Time saving approach

Fast, single layer construction of this realigned stretch of road restored this important transport link.

Asphalt contact

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