With paving season right around the corner, you are clearly in final preparations to start the season off right. Hopefully, participating in one or more Balanced Mix Design (BMD) pilot projects is part of those preparations! Many of you have included the purchase of laboratory equipment for BMD testing in these preparations, and some have even begun testing mixes during your mix design process. This is a great step towards understanding how your specific mixes will perform. Last season, only two projects were constructed. This paving season, more projects are needed to collect data and validate the performance specifications. Over the next few months, you are encouraged to discuss performing one or more BMD pilot projects with VDOT. These could be high RAP projects or “conventional RAP” mixes utilizing rejuvenators, different aggregate gradations, and/or different binders. The key is to learn and see what is possible before a specification is implemented in future contracts. Currently, there is a discussion of having contracts in 2021 with BMD specs and full implementation by 2023. However, what full implementation means has not been defined.
The VAA Team is here to support you!