In this case study, we are looking at the creation of a patio area using British Recycled Plastic lumber and decking boards. The installation was at an Early Years Centre operated by Herefordshire Council. Using recycled plastic offered several key advantages over wooden decking for the centre. Firstly the decking is maintenance free – the decking boards will not rot or degrade, and do not need the periodic treatment associated with wooden decking.
Recycled plastic is also resistant to moss and algae growth which not only looks unsightly but can also make surfaces slippery under foot, especially in wet conditions. Another reason recycled plastic decking offers greater slip resistance than wood is the fact that the surface texture of the material is rougher than wood, providing improved grip. This improved slip performance was important to the centre as the safety of the children is paramount.
The decking boards were fixed to standard recycled plastic profiles used as bearers at 600mm centres. 5mm gaps were left between decking boards to allow for water run-off. Decorative extras were added by the team, who cut, plained and sanded the recycled plastic profiles. The balustrades were made from edging boards with 100 x 100 posts used to support the roof section. The great strength of the profiles, a result of the recycled plastic mix and the intrusion moulding process, makes it fit for this purpose. The finished patio provides a safe, attractive, maintenance free new area for the Centre, and showcases how recycled plastic lumber is not simply utilitarian but can be worked to produce decorative effects.
Amount of plastic diverted from landfill on this project – 1415 KG
Milk Bottle Count – 78611