Case studies


Since a decade ago, the use of recyclable materials in the Australian construction industry has become an important item in resource efficiency and recovery policies for various economic, environmental and social reasons. This page showcases the application of C&D waste recyclables in construction projects (infrastructure, commercial, residential and office buildings) across Australia.

Case Study: Manufacturing with recycled materials in regional Victoria

Integrated Recycling, located in Mildura, Victoria, uses recycled plastic primarily from local agricultural sources to create durable products such as grape vine posts, landscaping products, boardwalks and railway sleepers. It also manufactures Duratrack, a recycled plastic railway sleeper that last more than three times longer than timber sleepers and requires less energy to manufacture than concrete or steel sleepers. This keeps waste plastic that would otherwise go to landfill at a higher value use for longer—a key principle of the circular economy. Integrated Recycling received support from rounds 2 and 3 of the Victorian Government’s Resource Recovery Infrastructure Fund to increase its production capacity. 

 Source: A circular economy for Victoria 2019- Sustainability Victoria (click here)

Case Study: Recycled materials in local infrastructure

Sustainability Victoria’s Research, Development and Demonstration grants program has supported local business Close the Loop to develop a new asphalt additive product, TonerPlas, made from materials that would otherwise go to landfill. Every 300 metres of road uses 530,000 plastic bags, 168 glass bottles, toner from 12,500 used printer cartridges, and 134 tonnes of reclaimed road asphalt. Tests to date indicate that asphalt made from recovered materials has improved wear and deformation resistance in some circumstances compared to standard VicRoads-specified asphalt.

 Source: A circular economy for Victoria 2019- Sustainability Victoria  (click here)

Case Study: Waverley Council: recycled glass in roads

In 2010, Waverley Council, in partnership with NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment, NSW Roads and Traffic Authority, Institute of Public Works Engineering Australia and the Packaging Stewardship Forum, provided the first site within NSW to demonstrate alternate use of crushed glass in pavement construction as an accepted product in NSW roads. Waverley Council substituted 15 tonnes of glass cullet into the road projects, 7.5 tonnes into asphalt and 7.5 tonnes into concrete.

Source: Construction and demolition waste guide-recycling and re-use across the supply chain (click here)

Case Study: Built Environs: 100 Hutt Street, Adelaide

100 Hutt Street is a commercial office building and the head office of Built Environs, the national building brand of McConnell Dowell. 100 Hutt Street was refurbished between 2007 and 2008 using the Green Building Council of Australia’s (GBCA) Green Star building rating tool to demonstrate leading practice. The refurbishment achieved an overall rating of five green stars. During the construction, 100 Hutt Street implemented a waste management plan and recycled
or re-used 95.1 per cent of construction waste (by weight) from the construction activities, far exceeding the Green Star credit criterion.

Source: Construction and demolition waste guide-recycling and re-use across the supply chain (click here)

Case Study: Roads to Reuse Pilot Project: Kwinana Freeway Northbound Widening

Kwinana Freeway Northbound Widening project was completed in 2019 and used approximately 25,000 tonnes of recycled construction and demolition (C&D) waste or crushed recycled concrete as sub-base under full depth asphalt. Further, the project team has provided surplus site material to smaller local projects and, overall, sold 56,783 tonnes of waste sand suitable for reuse.

More information: please visit the Roads to reuse web page (click here)

Source: Building our future: Main Roads WA- Projects Update 2019

Case Study: Reclaimed asphalt as unsealed residential pavement in Regional South Australia 

The reconstruction of Cooper Street Kudla was undertaken by the City of Gawler works engineering department who chose Bitumate as the appropriate material for an unsealed surface. Cooper Street is a regional access road to five residential properties. Reconstruction of the road pavement in addition to installation of side drainage was required due to regular flooding. As an unsealed surface patrol grading is minimal, and with some residual bitumen provides some cohesion to reduce ravelling (particularly at the intersection) and some “re-healing” of the surface under traffic in hot weather occurs. Reclaimed asphalt is received at C&D recycling facilities predominantly in the form of slab asphalt removed from old pavements. The raw feed material is processed through crushing and screening to a grading with little or no plasticity. The product is produced by Resourceco under the brand name “BitumateTM”.

 Source: Reclaimed asphalt as unsealed residential pavement- Sustainable Aggregates South Australia (click here)

Source: LJ Hooker, SA