Case Study: Permeable Pavers

Wilford Lane, Newtown


Newtown, NSW


Inner West




Warren Smith & Partners and Turf Design



HydroSTON 80 sandstone pavers installed in a laneway in Newtown, Sydney

Marrickville Council, in the inner west region of Sydney, wanted to redevelop Wilford Lane in Newtown. The lane is low traffic primarily used by cars but also once or twice a day by lorries and service vehicles. In early 2011, Council urban water engineers developed concepts in consultation with the local community, who were keen to create a ‘green lane’ involving permeable pavers.

Since the community was interested in having coloured pavers, HydroCon was consulted on possible colour options. After producing various coloured samples, cream sandstone was selected. HydroCon scheduled a special production run of 130 m2 HydroSTON 80 Cream Sandstone pavers, which were delivered in May 2012. HydroCon Joint Filler was used for jointing.

The initial concept for the trafficable part of the lane involved excavating the existing asphalt surface, then laying a geofabric, 50mm sand course and permeable paver directly over the existing road base. The laneway itself would be bounded by two kerbs (no gutter) but would have a vegetated biofilter down the center of the lane to collect water, which permeates through the porous pavers, via subsoil drainage pipes to a pit in a central location.

The final design concept required HydroSTON 80 pavers to be bedded on 70mm deep, 5mm no fines gravel compacted to 98% std density overlaying an impermeable membrane and a 200mm deep road base. Permeate would be collected in the central drainage trench. Questions arose concerning possible alternatives to concrete edge restraints since providing concrete edge strips on both sides of the central biofilter would have added considerably to the cost of constructing the biofilter. There was also the issue of draining water from the bedding layer under the porous pavements to the central biofilter.

HydroSTON pavers are also used for footpaths and courtyards. A range of different shapes and colours allows creative patterns and combinations. Their slip resistant and quick draining surface make these pavers particularly suitable for schools, aged care and high pedestrian traffic areas.

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