Why was this location chosen?
We chose a study site that already has a bitumen road, is contributing to a night-time urban heat island hot spot, receives reasonably uniform heat profile, will cause minimal impact to residents and traders and will inform future urban cooling options around the Adelaide Central Markets, our city generally and other regions.
Are the cool road surfaces safe to walk and drive on?
We have ensured all three cool road surface products have passed the standard skid and slip testing for vehicles and pedestrians.
Will the surfaces cause glare?
There will be a visual change to the road.
Community survey results regarding one of the products gathered by another metropolitan Adelaide Council suggests glare is not a significant issue. However, the possibility of glare and other inconveniences to our community is why a road with minimal nearby neighbours was chosen and why we will be gathering your feedback on the products.
It sounds like a potentially inefficient and expensive way to reduce urban heat. Is Council going to expand the trial by putting a cool surface product on every road?
All three of the cool road surfaces are versions of seal coats which are standard road preservation products. The primary purpose of seal coats in the past has been to extend the life of roads, therefore reducing the cost of road laying and maintenance over the long term. If the trial is deemed successful it will be for road preservation and urban cooling reasons. Any future cool road surface product applications will be conducted after a thorough cost benefit analysis. There are also road bitumen suppliers who are currently researching heat reflective bitumen products which may be a product option in years to come.
We are installing, considering and testing other urban cooling methods such as planting street trees and vegetation lighter footpath pavements, cool roofs, green walls and arbours, stormwater capture and use and even misting for events.
What products are you using?
We are applying two products from Fulton Hogan JetBloc and JetCool. Both of these have previously been used in the aviation industry but not on urban or suburban roads. The third product is CoolSeal, supplied by SuperSealing, which has been used extensively overseas on urban and suburban roads and is undergoing trial on some streets within Charles Sturt and Salisbury Council areas.
It seems a lot of trouble to go to cool things down a bit?
We know heat affects people’s wellbeing and behaviour.
If, in hot weather, we can reduce the air temperature by even 1-2oC it can increase people’s desire to visit and walk around our city, exercise, enjoy outside dinning and events and move between venues. There are also other potential benefits like better quality roads for longer with reduced maintenance costs, reduced energy costs for surrounding buildings, and the prevention of heat-related illnesses.