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Tyre bales used as road foundation

Bales of old tyres are being used to rebuild a country road for the first time in Scotland.

South Lanarkshire Council is using one-tonne bound bales of used tyres to form the foundations of the Meadowhead Road in East Kilbride.

The road had suffered a series of problems in recent years caused by heavy vehicles. Investigators found the road sat on up to 2.5m of peat.  

Now the peat is to be removed and replaced with the bales of pressed tyres which are lighter than traditional road building materials.

Deputy chair of South Lanarkshire Council’s enterprise resources committee, Councillor Graham Simpson, said: “This is a highly innovative and unusual method of repairing a road.

“I was surprised to come here and see the tyres and the way they are used – I imagined it would be churned up bits of tyre, not the bales which are in cubes measuring roughly a square metre.

“Of course with any new venture it is not without risk, but because the peat has been completely removed our engineers feel there is a good chance this could work.

“If it is as successful as we hope, there is a real chance that this method could be used in other suitable roads across South Lanarkshire.”

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