A NEW INITIATIVE to reduce carbon emissions across the borough is being brought to the streets.
Kerbstones made from recycled plastics will be trialled in three locations across the Wokingham borough; Elm Road, Earley, Old Forest Road and Easthampstead Road, Wokingham.
The new kerbing contains about 88% recycled material and is cut with hand tools so, unlike concrete, it does not create crystalline silica dust.
As the kerbs weigh less than traditional materials, it also reduces handling injury risks and can be installed without the need for mechanical equipment.
This can help to speed up installation, as well as being environmentally friendly
Wokingham Borough Council hope that the installation of plastic kerbs will reduce the amount of carbon produced in manufacturing, transport and construction by about 40% compared to concrete kerbing.
The three locations are high-use areas, particularly by HGVs, where kerbs have previously been damaged.
The plastic kerbs will be installed in small areas on these roads to see how they stand up to use and will be monitored over a period of time.
If successful, the council may also look to trial other areas, such as drop kerbs for new access points, to see how they perform.
As part of the trial, the council will review the performance and resilience of the kerbing along with the environmental benefits.
“I am excited by our trials of this innovative type of kerbing,” said Cllr Pauline Jorgensen, executive member for highways and transport. “We are looking for ways to make our services greener and this solution allows us to find an effective use of recycled materials while carrying out important highway maintenance across our network.”
It follows on from the council’s on-going greenways project, where material using up to 75% former rubber tyre has been used to lay new surfaces for walkers, cyclists and horse riders.
These have been installed in locations such as Dinton Pastures and California Country Park, as well as on footpaths and byways across the borough.
“Exploring further use of recycled products like these kerbstones are the type of changes we are looking into as we aim to be a carbon neutral borough by 2030,” said Cllr Gregor Murray, executive member for climate emergency.
“I look forward to reviewing the success of these trials to see if the kerbing could be rolled out to other locations in the future.”