History of Pavers
Paving has been around for almost 5,000 years. The oldest paved road was discovered in the summer of 1994, in Giza, Egypt. This road is the oldest paved road in the planet built over 4,600 years as a route to connect an ancient basalt quarry to Lake Moeris and used to transport large stones for the construction of the temples of Giza. This ancient road measures 7 ½ miles in length and 6 ½ feet in width. The road was paved with thousands of slabs of sandstone and limestone and some logs of petrified wood. The still standing road was used to carry massive stones using sleds and proved to be reliable.
In 500 B.C., during the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire, Rome introduced the segmental pavers in their road system. The Romans needed their armies to travel quickly within the empire and the current kinds of roads posed many problems. The roads were often muddy, created too much drag, and also created lots of dust in heavily transited areas. To solve that problem, the Romans created roads with deep roadbeds of crushed stone and a top layer that included six sided capstones. The Roman Roads provided the troops with much faster transportation and proved to be reliable as the still stand to this day.
Overtime in history many roads where built and paved based on the Roman road design and natural stones and clay was use to pave the road up until the 18th century. At that point in history, British builders realized the importance of selecting clean stones for surfacing to make better roads. The selection of clean stones made road paving a bit costly until later on when concrete pavers could be manufactured. Most of these roads provided a means of fast transportation with the use of horse drawn carriages.
In the 1940’s Holland faced a problem with its roads because Holland is situated below sea level therefore the ground constantly shifts, moves and sinks. Poured concrete was not an option because it is not flexible and would strain and crack. Therefore, Holland turned to the use of individual stones placed in sand, which provided with a flexible road yet durable road that would not be affected by shifts and movements of the ground.
After World War II, most of Europe was in ruin and reconstruction began. The roads where rebuilt using paving stones as they have historically proved to be able to withstand certain demands that concrete and asphalt could not meet. German engineer, Fritz Von Langsdorff developed a choice of shapes and introduced the use of colors in concrete pavers. Historically pavers where often made of natural stone or clay, but the introduction of concrete paving stones turned out to be more economical to produce and had tremendous pressure resistance. The first concrete paving stones where installed in Stuttgart, Germany.
Concrete interlocking pavers where now an efficient and economical choice as mass production started in the 1960’s in Germany. In the 1970’s production technology spread through Europe and other parts of the world including the United States. Since then America has seen a significant growth of concrete interlocking pavers and has been growing steadily.
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