If you're about to finish building the home of your dreams, you will undoubtedly want to show it off to friends, neighbours and colleagues and will want to make sure that you create that all-important first impression. After all, your home stands alone in its own yard and will look very imposing as people first turn into the driveway. However, you do need to ensure that the driveway itself is built to a similar standard and will certainly want to consider something other than a basic gravel path. What material should you use to wow your visitors?
Nothing makes an impression like concrete, and if you are concerned about the environment, this should be your choice as well. Concrete is a fully sustainable resource and is in abundant supply and is made from limestone, sand, water and natural rock. You certainly cannot say the same for an asphalt driveway.
Your concrete driveway can include raw materials made from recyclable items, like aggregate reclaimed from a building project. Concrete components can also be made using byproducts from industrial power plants, such as fly ash or furnace slag.
Not only is concrete more sustainable than asphalt, but you can also expect it to last a lot longer. Asphalt can soften in the harsh Australian climate and can consequently be vulnerable to damage. You may have to resurface or replace parts of it each year, but you're unlikely to come across this problem with concrete.
A concrete driveway may even be more welcoming at night than the asphalt alternative, as it is much lighter and brighter. You may not need to install additional ground lights to help your late-night visitors find their way.
Did you know that a concrete driveway can help you to save energy? Although this material will not repel the sun's rays in the daytime, it doesn't absorb as much as darker materials, such as asphalt, so concrete will keep the surrounding area a lot cooler. This saving can extend into the property itself, as less energy is transmitted from the driveway surface to the walls of the building. You may also save on your irrigation bill as the temperature of the surrounding land is that much lower.
Making Your Choice
It's easy to see why concrete is a better solution than asphalt when you weigh up all these advantages. Your next call should be to a concrete contractor who will be able to help you draw up plans for your final masterpiece.