Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

April 25, 2014

Orange barrels on a highway

Minnesota Department of Transportation wins 2013 Perpetual Pavement Award


ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Asphalt Pavement Alliance (APA) announced today that the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) has won a 2013 Perpetual Pavement Award for TH 95 from milepost 105 to 110 in Washington County. This is the 12th time that MnDOT has won a Perpetual Pavement award, and it is the only state DOT to have received this award every year since 2002.

To qualify for this prestigious award, a pavement must be at least 35 years old and never had a structural failure. The average interval between resurfacing of each winning pavement must be no less than 12 years.  The pavement must demonstrate the characteristics expected from long-life asphalt pavements: excellence in design, quality in construction and value to the traveling public.

Engineers at the National Center for Asphalt Technology (NCAT) evaluated the nominations and validated the winners.

Initial construction of the award-winning portion of TH 95 began in 1960 with final paving taking place in 1961. In some areas, the in-place material was removed and replaced with a granular material to improve drainage in the road’s structure. To build the two-lane road, contractors placed and compacted 12 inches of granular material, followed by a 7.5-inch layer of granular material, a 1.5-inch asphalt base and 3 inches of asphalt pavement.
The 5-mile stretch of pavement received an asphalt overlay in 1992 and a 2-inch mill and fill in 2000. Its average daily traffic count is 13,500 vehicles, and it has carried approximately 2 million ESALS (equivalent single axle loads) since it was built.

“We are pleased to receive this 2013 Perpetual Pavement award for TH 95,” said Susan Mulvihill, MnDOT deputy commissioner and chief engineer.  “It is a testament to the benefits of perpetual pavements that we have a section, five miles long, which has remained in such good condition as it carries heavy commercial vehicles, recreational vehicles and passenger cars along the scenic St. Croix River. 

“This award also supports the belief we have at MnDOT that investing in pavements at the right time is cost effective and prolongs the life of the asset.  Perpetual pavements, such as this segment, provide a solid return on the investment made by the citizens of our state,” Mulvihill said.

As a winner of a 2013 Perpetual Award, MnDOT will receive an engraved crystal obelisk, and its name and project will be added to a permanent plaque that is kept at NCAT.

“One of the keys to sustainability is long life,” said Michael J. Kvach, executive director of the Asphalt Pavement Alliance. “Asphalt roads can be engineered to last indefinitely with only routine maintenance and periodic surface renewal.

“The advantages of these perpetual pavements are significant.  Life cycle costs are lower because deep pavement repairs and reconstruction are avoided.  User delays are reduced because minor surface rehabilitation requires shorter work windows and can avoid peak traffic hours.  And there are environment benefits because minimal rehabilitation, combined with recycling any materials that are removed from the pavement surface, reduces the amount of material resources required over the pavement’s life.” 

The Asphalt Pavement Alliance is a coalition of the National Asphalt Pavement Association, the Asphalt Institute and the state asphalt pavement associations. The Asphalt Pavement Alliance's mission is to establish asphalt as the preferred choice for quality, performance and the environment.