Ice District

Paving At Ice District

Edmonton – the city that is home to the Edmonton Oilers and Capital of Alberta has one of the country’s best real estate markets. Ice District in Downtown Edmonton is a booming piece of property.

Ice District

Ice District is a collection of entertainment and sports facilities that are found in a single location. The district is 25 acres in the heart of the Edmonton city and it is still growing.

More and more facilities are being planned and constructed for the people. The vision is for offices, condos, a public plaza, sports, entertainment and shopping all to be found at one location.

Ice District is not an area that a person can stroll through. 25 acres is massive. If you want to get to places in Ice District, you need some wheels, and your wheels need a road to travel on.

The Job

Many parts of Ice District are still coming up. A new building was emerging on Block D of the Ice District. The building is designated to be used by the City of Edmonton. One of the few remaining things to make the building available for the City of Edmonton was the road.

The building needed an easy access and connectivity to the rest of the Ice District and in turn, Edmonton.

The Challenges

Ice District

The biggest need of our client was to build an accessible road as soon as possible. However, this posed a very big challenge as not only was the pavement project immense but also the construction detail was demanding .


A strict timeline was plotted and adhered to. This enables us to complete the pavement project within the timeline specified by the client.


Before actually starting the project, we got our resources organized. From having an available workforce to ensuring that equipment could be accessed when required, this was critical to the preparation.

Fluid Communication:

On the field, fluid communication is vital to ensure the pavement construction moves forward without any pauses or breaks.

Each challenge was tackled in the best manner possible.

The Completion

Despite the tough timeline, the immense skill the project demanded, the constant pressure and stress, and the occasional snags, we stuck to the timeline and completed the project. Our professional employees were tested to their limits and they passed with flying colors.

Not only are we, at Blacktop Paving, proud of our work, but we are also proud of our employees that made it possible. And, if you are driving through Block D of the Ice District – enjoy the smooth road!

gravel driveway

Why You Don’t Want A Gravel Driveway

A gravel driveway appears fancy. True. Though the disadvantages of gravel driveways are few in number, they ultimately are severe. Gravel driveways are difficult to maintain and even walking over a gravel driveway spreads dust into the air.

Here is our set of cons of gravel driveway:

Snow removal

For those who live in snowy climates, removing snow from a bumpy surface is a hassle, and removing the rocks that get pushed into the yard after shoveling or plowing is an even bigger hassle. During winter months, removal of snow can be difficult. Oftentimes, using salt or sand on top of the snow & gravel can be the only solution to make the surface slip-free. So you might want to think twice before getting a gravel driveway installed.

Ruts and sinkholes

Gravel driveways with a high level of usage may be prone to developing ruts. Gravel will shift over time, forming grooves where water can puddle. Stagnant water can create a lot of issues. Grooves are also a nuisance to drive on, unless you’re into the idea of a driveway complete with your very own speed bumps. Fortunately, these can be levelled out with more gravel.

Dirt and dust

When you drive over gravel or even walk over it, the lighter particles of air will fly into the air from the surface below. Driving over gravel can produce more dust than any other type of material. Driving down a gravel driveway can cause dust, debris and dirt to fly – especially in the dry summer months. This may cause the exterior of your home to become dirty and hence, it may require frequent cleaning.

Whenever you think about getting a driveway installed, make sure you build it with asphalt. Asphalt driveways are easier to repair and they most certainly don’t blow as much dust as gravel driveways do. More importantly, the life of asphalt driveways goes as high as 20 years, provided it is maintained properly. True, it requires more attention than a gravel driveway, but in the end, it is worth it.

Now that you are aware of the major cons of gravel driveway, ensure you make the right choice by NOT opting for a gravel driveway. Contact a professional road construction company today and get your driveway installed.

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affects your asphalt

Seasonal Change Affects Your Asphalt

Seasonal changes affect asphalt in different ways. Ultimately you might need repairs depending on the issue at hand.

Here are a few seasonal changes your asphalt pavement goes through:


Potholes are obvious signs your asphalt needs repair. Colder months cause freezing above and below the surface of asphalt which leads to potholes. Warmer months can bring pounding heat and UV rays which over time can crack and strip the asphalt roads, parking lots and driveways, also leading to raveling and potholes.

Asphalt Parking Lots

Conduct preventive maintenance on your parking lot before the rains start or before it starts snowing. Basically conduct proper maintenance before the damage causing seasons set in. Maintenance is generally planned in advance to seal the surface from water, as well as lessen the effects of oxidation and weather. Apply a sealant every few years to keep the surface layer of asphalt protected.

Steep Terrain Asphalt Erosion

If you see the rocks around rivers or in river beds, they corrode slowly over a period of time. Similarly, when it rains in steeper elevations, little by little rain washes(corrodes) away the liquid asphalt leaving bare rock and aggregate. The aggregates and asphalt break away and wind up in runoff, gutters and storm drains.

Hot Temperatures

Heat can cause cracks in the asphalt which can result in water seeping in. The water may not damage the asphalt in the same way when it freezes due to cold temperatures, but it can damage the asphalt by eroding the subsurface layers. This results in an air gap forming within the pavement. If the pavement above these subsurface gaps experiences any pressure, such as the weight of a vehicle passing over it, the top layer of the asphalt will sag, collapse, and then crumble, thereby forming a pothole.

Effect on Asphalt

All hard surfaces, including asphalt, absorb heat. This causes not only the surface temperature to rise, but also causes the ambient temperature to rise. This results in UHI (Urban Heat Island). UHI is basically an effect in which urban environments, which consists of less vegetation and more roads and buildings, have a significantly higher temperature than the rural areas directly around it. This means that when you are installing asphalt, you need an asphalt material that reflects as much heat as possible instead of asphalt that absorbs most heat.

As mentioned in the above points, a lot of things may affect your driveway. Regular maintenance may help in reducing the damage and repairs necessary as well. Altogether, it may prevent seasonal changes from affecting your asphalt road. Hire the services of a professional if you want to keep your asphalt road in the best condition.

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right asphalt mix

Choose The Right Asphalt Mix

Choosing the right asphalt mix can be really confusing. We strongly urge you to consider the advice of a professional when selecting the right type of mix. The type of mix required depends on factors like the purpose of the road being constructed, the types of vehicles that will be parked or driven on it and so on.

To break a common myth about asphalt, we would like to say that all of the asphalt is not the same. It is easy to think so if you never had to mix, roll, or lay it yourself. It is easy to think that because in a finished state, all of the asphalt looks the same. Asphalt, or bitumen, is a type of petroleum that occurs naturally.

Asphalt itself is not always the same. Different types come from different regions, so the properties can vary. In addition, some types have chemicals added in factories or labs that can help bring out certain properties over others. As you know, asphalt pavement consists of the following:

  • Aggregate mix (rocks)
  • Bitumen (a mixture of hydrocarbons)

The method of mixing the aggregate with the bitumen can vary from company to company, region to region. Altogether, there is a tremendous amount of mixes that these disparate things can create. There are mainly two types of mixes.

  • Hot mix
  • Cold mix

A professional will be able to decide which mix will be best for the pavement you need. But it’s not always easy considering that different proprietary blends are out there.

Hot Mix

Hot mixes are the most commonly used mixes. The mix is heated and rolled. This type of mix has a variety of mixes as far as types and uses are concerned. Hence, it is important to use a hot mix which has a proven track record for the purpose it needs to be used for or will be used for. For permanent results, a good premium hot mix will work best.

Cold Mix

Traditionally, cold mix has often been thought of as consumer grade asphalt. Meaning, it is often store-bought, good for DIY tasks. It is not considered as strong and durable as hot mix. But again, as mentioned above for hot mixes, there are many commercial grade cold mix solutions that work as well depending on the intended purpose and use of the driveway or pavement. They work better but not as well as hot mixes. Cold mix patches tend to cost less, and require less time to administer. They are ideal for making repairs during cool, cold, wet, or arid months.

Selecting the right mix for your task is not an easy job and you should most definitely not do it without the help of a professional as you leave a lot of room for mistakes. Consult a professional road construction company which will help you in selecting the right type of mix necessary for your pavement or driveway.

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know about potholes

What You Need to Know About Potholes

Potholes are something you can’t ignore. Avoid? Maybe, if there’s not so many on your road that you can make a sport out of it.

We’d like bring a few pothole facts to your knowledge.

Pothole Identification

For a hole to be identified as a pothole, it needs to be at least 40mm in depth. That is the criterion for identifying a pothole. Potholes are formed by water, freezing and freeze-thaw cycles, excessive heat, wear and tear – and time.

Areas Most Prone

Areas most prone to pothole development are where drainage is poor. Particularly where roads dip, such as the trough under viaducts, where vehicular traffic is greatest – especially heavy vehicle traffic – and where poor maintenance allows small fissures to deteriorate are the areas which develop potholes frequently.

Joint Concrete Causes Potholes

People assume that potholes are caused by asphalt failures, that poor quality asphalt is to blame, but they are wrong. Many roads, including those in Toronto, have a concrete base with 80mm of asphalt overlay to improve ride comfort and skid resistance. The concrete is joined at 3m intervals to control cracking of concrete. These joints cause cracking of the asphalt overlay within 1-2 years of placement. Without maintenance such as sealing, these cracks will form potholes at the reflection cracks in the asphalt overlay.

Asphalt and Cement Meet the Necessary Standards

As mentioned in the previous point, people assume that asphalt and cement used in the construction of potholes are of inferior quality. All of the asphalt cement used in Ontario meets the mandated standards that undergo constant review and development.

Cold Mix and Hot Mix

City crews normally use two kinds of asphalt mixes to patch the holes, namely, cold mix and hot mix. The problem is hot mix needs non-freezing temperatures for asphalt companies to manufacture. This is the reason cold mix is generally used during winter and early spring. It is hard to manufacture hot mix. Cold mix isn’t as bendable as hot mix, and it doesn’t last as long.

We are glad we were able to bust a few myths about potholes and help you with a few pothole facts. You will need to hire a professional road construction firm to fix potholes on driveway. That asphalt driveway repair won’t be needed often if you maintain your driveway or parking space regularly.

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your parking lot look better

5 Ways to Make Your Parking Lot Look Better

You want to make your parking lot look appealing?

Well, there are a few simple things which can keep your parking lot in good shape as well as make it look better:

Regular Sweeping

Regular sweeping of dirt is necessary as it prevents the dust from settling down. Once dust settles down, it attracts more dirt. Dirt and debris can block drainage and lead to standing water and puddles, which can then lead to asphalt damage. Besides, it’s important to keep your parking lot clean – not only to make a good impression on your customers but also to protect your asphalt. The simple task of sweeping will help make your parking lot look appealing.


Welcome both employees and clients with a stunning and sophisticated entrance to the parking lot. It is important not to go completely overboard here, so be sure to include a few lush, overgrown green filler plants that will serve as a guide to the front door. Making your employees and clients feel good when they come to your parking lot will have a great impact on their mindset. Who would like to go to a place where the parking lot itself says you’re not welcome here?

Fresh Air

Having a few benches strategically placed around the company grounds is a great way to get your employees outside for some fresh air — and as an added bonus, they will enjoy the perfectly laid out commercial landscaping design. Let the outdoor furniture mimic or complement the building’s interior furniture. There are plenty of options from sleek and modern to antique and rustic design. It will make your employees feel that you as an employer are concerned about their comfort.

Upgrade Lighting

Having a lighting system that illuminates the entire parking lot during the evening is a must. Invest in one if you don’t have one. Parking lots are supposed to make your employees and visitors safe when they come to your office. If you can invest in a surveillance system, do so. If you have a video surveillance system watching over your parking lot you will be able to monitor things happening clearly and efficiently.

Growing Plants

If you have plants in or around your parking lot, make sure you leave room for them to grow. Professional landscapers will know to properly space out trees and larger shrubs, yet always ask for a finished layout before giving the go-ahead to start the project. Note that some species of plants or trees are very thick and may obstruct the view of entrances.

Parking lot maintenance should be conducted regularly so that you do not have a parking space that is full of potholes and still water. With the help of the above tips improve the appearance of your parking lot and if you want to any new ideas, you can always consult professionals.

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you maintain a concrete driveway

How Do You Maintain A Concrete Driveway

Maintaining a concrete driveway takes a little effort if not much but mostly it’s about remembering a few things.

So, how do you maintain a concrete driveway? Here are some points for that.

Clear Concrete Driveway On A Regular Basis

How often you clear your concrete driveway really depends on how much use the driveway gets and how much road traffic and other pollutants the said area has. A pressure washer is the best tool for the job. You can hire a professional company. If your driveway has a lot of stains or other discoloration, this may be the best option since they’ll have special products for stain removal.

Don’t Change The Oil With Car Parked On The Driveway

If you’re like a lot of people, you may do at least some maintenance on your own vehicle when it’s parked on the driveway. But whenever you change the oil there’s a high risk that it may spill onto the driveway. If you have no other option, use a large drip pan available at an automotive store. They’re intended for just that purpose. Or altogether, you could avoid changing the oil on the driveway.

Clean And Reapply Sealer As Needed

How often do you clean and reseal will depend on the weather conditions the concrete is exposed to and the amount of vehicle traffic it receives. Usually, you should reseal a concrete driveway every two years or so, or when the finish begins to show wear. Clean your concrete driveway and reseal it when needed, which will aid you in your concrete driveway maintenance. Also, never hire crews that go door-to-door offering to seal your driveway. This is a common scam used to con you out of some of your hard earned cash.

Avoid Parking Heavy Vehicles

Yes, concrete is one of the toughest types of construction material you can use to build roads and driveways. But the residential driveway is not equipped to withstand frequent parking of garbage trucks or other types of heavy trucks. Avoid putting large construction equipment or parking large vans on the driveway.

Get Rid of Spills And Stains Right Away

You don’t want any water seeping into your concrete lying around or any oil spills causing damage to your driveway. When water starts seeping into the ground, it will spoil the foundation of the driveway slowly deteriorating the whole driveway.

Concrete driveway maintenance is an important thing you should avoid overlooking. If you carry out regular maintenance, then the chances of needing concrete driveway repair are less. Consult a professional construction company today.

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driveway scams

Beware of Driveway Scams

Have you heard getting scammed by asphalt contractors. They usually come to your door and ask if your driveway needs to be paved since they have extra asphalt from a previous job and that you need to make a decision right away. Sounds familiar to any stories you have heard? Yes. This is a common asphalt scam and in no way a legit driveway contractor.

Read on if you want to avoid bad paving jobs.

Door to Door Selling

Reputable asphalt contractors will sometimes offer their services if they are doing a legitimate job in the immediate area. Always ask for references so that you can verify it. But in most cases, it is a part of the common asphalt scams that you hear of in the news. Do not trust anyone who comes to your door and asks if you need your driveway paved.

Claim They Have Leftover Asphalt From Another Job

Another job? Ask for references as mentioned above. Verify it. Because chances are high that it is a scam. They will try to appear genuine and tell you that they have leftover asphalt from another job. Professional asphalt contractors will know, with great accuracy, how much paving material will be needed to complete a certain project. Rarely, will they have any leftover material. Some of the reasons a contractor might have left over material are due to weather, equipment problems and cancellations. but not enough to pave a whole road or driveway won’t happen.

On Spot Payment

If a contractor states that a price is for “today only,” or “working in your area this week only” that usually means that he is what’s called a “Traveller”. Travellers or more commonly called “Gypsies”, move from state to state and town to town. After they have worn out their welcome, they move to a different state or town. These people usually have out of state license plates, fancy trucks, and areason you need to do the work right now. Always just take a moment to see if they are in the phone book, if they say they are new, call directory assistance. That call worth few cents could save your asphalt from a bad paving job and more importantly, you from being taken advantage of.

Push You To Make A Quick Decision

The ones registered, or the genuine ones will never have a limited time offer. They could but be advised, it will not be for only one single day. Also, reputable contractors will provide a written estimate that will be valid for weeks or months. If the great deal they are offering you today is not available tomorrow or next week it may be a scam. Be wary.

Cash On Sales

If the contractor you hire will only accept cash or wants the check made out to cash, BEWARE. Never make a check out to “cash” and if they insists on using their personal name ask for a valid driver’s license and copy all their information. A reputable contractor will always ask for a cheque made out in the name of the business. Another thing to be aware of is, most reputable contractors accept cheques or credit cards and don’t require ONLY cash payments.

Avoid getting scammed and keep in mind the above mentioned pointers.

Also Keep In Mind:

  • If a contractor wants payment up front, first make sure they are on a list of licensed and bonded businesses at or by calling the Consumer Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-427-4088.
  • Contact Service Alberta if you need to report any frauds or scams and if you need help.

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restoration myths

Pavement Restoration Myths

You probably have heard of a lot of myths pertaining to asphalt maintenance and driveway repair using concrete to asphalt and vice versa. For a fact, you know they are myths and hence you are looking for answers on the internet, aren’t you?

We will guide you in your search by busting a few myths regarding asphalt maintenance.

Myth #1 Asphalt Restoration Takes Longer to Complete

Asphalt pavement restoration takes an hour to be fully completed. However, you will have to wait for three to four hours for the mixture to dry and be ready to be driven upon. Concrete restoration takes comparatively longer.

Myth #2 Asphalt Restoration is not as Sturdy as Concrete Restoration

This is completely wrong. It is possible for asphalt to handle severe temperature fluctuations in both hot and cold climates which proves that it is sturdier than concrete and any other material alternatives. Concrete cracks because of temperature variations. For this exact reason people prefer asphalt restoration to concrete restoration. One more advantage of choosing asphalt is that it is a lot cheaper compared to other materials.

Myth #3 Asphalt Restoration is Only Possible in its Primary Color

Usually, most of the asphalt restoration is done in black, but most of the colors are available which you can use to restore your asphalt pavement/driveway. You don’t necessarily have to choose black when you commence with the restoration of your driveway, parking lot or pavement.

Myth #4 Asphalt Restoration is Pricier Than Concrete Restoration

This is most certainly not the case. The cost difference between concrete restoration and asphalt restoration will surprise you, asphalt restoration is must more cost-effective. Furthermore, the installation process costs more compared to asphalt restoration. So now you know which one to opt for when going for a driveway repair.

Myth #5 Asphalt Restoration Leaves Trails Behind

As with installation, many inexperienced pavement contractors might tell you that asphalt restoration leaves a trail behind. You could get asphalt stuck to your tires or shoes. This is nothing but a myth. When you hire an experienced contractor, he will complete the job correctly and as a result, it will not leave any asphalt to get stuck on your shoes or tires which in its turn will not leave a trail.

Regular asphalt maintenance should be carried out so that your driveway needs fewer repairs over the years and it ages well. Contact Blacktop Paving today and get your driveway repair needs assessed.

-love asphalt pavements

5 Reasons To Love Asphalt Pavements

Looking for reasons to love asphalt pavements? Well, we have got the perfect set for you. This is everything a person seeks from his driveway. This is how he wishes it would be.

Following are the benefits of asphalt paving and if they don’t make you fall in love with asphalt, we don’t think it is meant to be.

Economic Advantage

The main factor which proves to be the deciding factor in many cases is budget. Asphalt is a low-cost building material. It is less expensive, not just in actual cost, but also in terms of the time it takes to complete construction. In a broader sense, asphalt being quick and easy to use saves the taxpayer’s money, government’s and contractor’s time and money too. Is this not enough a reason to love asphalt?

Asphalt Paving Safety

Asphalt’s safety feature is related to its smooth-like finish. It offers drivers skid resistance, reduced back-splash and better visual distinction between road markings. Asphalt also helps keep roads free from ice and snow. You could say that asphalt is keeping you safe in its own way.

Durability of Asphalt Paving

Durability is another factor which will help us in the task of getting you to love asphalt more than any other alternative by the end of this article. Asphalt is a reliable weather resistant material and can be designed for low and high traffic conditions. It can withstand the harshest of weathers and the heaviest of semi-trailers. Asphalt can also be designed to fit a specific purpose.


If you have done your research, you’ve understood by now that asphalt is quick and easy to repair. By maintaining cracks and resealing roads, driveways and highways regularly, major degradation can be delayed. Although bear in mind whenever resealing your driveway, make sure you know that the root cause of the crack isn’t something which needs immediate attention.


You can use a new asphalt driveway/parking lot usually between 2 – 4 days depending on the time of the year when the driveway was laid. In spring and fall the driveway/parking lot cures faster (hardens) because the days are not as hot and it gets cooler at night. During summers, it takes longer to cure due to the summer heat. Concrete takes 7 days to cure unless you have a high early mix which costs substantially more. We think we know what your obvious choice is going to be for your driveway installation.

When you have some many benefits of asphalt paving, when asphalt is giving you so much than concrete, it is obvious to love asphalt more isn’t it? Jokes apart, depending on your use and needs, consult a professional construction company and get your driveway installation done.