Green Way Pavements, a “green” paving company, has moved into their new offices at 123 Court Street in Binghamton. Zeljka Roksandic and Robert Gerard, the owners, believe that there are great opportunities in Binghamton for green paving options. The owners contend that their products are of a high quality, are environmentally friendly, and are competitively priced. Additionally, these paving services can be customized so easily that the owners encourage their customers to “design your driveway.”
Zeljka and Robert first became interested in green paving when they were researching alternatives for driveway paving two years ago. They decided that concrete was too expensive and that asphalt was not durable enough for them. The owners eventually found an alternative, which consisted of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic grid-pavers; small stones, topsoil, and grass could be put into the cells. This alternative not only was affordable, but required little maintenance, was environmentally friendly, and was as effective as other paving options. However, Zeljka and Robert found that the biggest manufacturers of these pavers were outside the U.S. At that point in time, ingenuity struck; the couple started Green Way Pavements.
The paving options offered by Green Way Pavements have several advantages over other alternatives. The green paving is much less expensive than concrete, and is similarly priced to asphalt. It is also far more durable than asphalt and thus has much lower maintenance costs. As a matter of fact, green paving typically requires little maintenance. In addition, the green paving is much more aesthetically pleasing than the blacktop of asphalt; the green paving “looks very natural,” according to Zeljka, while asphalt “smells like an oil field.” The product offered by Green Way Pavements also has a multitude of applications, from driveways, to pathways, to tennis courts. Furthermore, Robert and Zeljka stress the fact that removing snow from the paving is easy. “The plows should be raised 1 inch above the paver,” notes Zeljka.
The above advantages are appealing, but the most alluring aspect of the paving offered is its environmentally-friendly qualities. The product is completely comprised of recycled consumer waste materials. In addition, it is 95% permeable, which means that “water goes straight to the water table,” says Robert; he argues that the permeability of the paving may decrease the impact of flooding. Robert states that the permeability also is good because “nature is the best purifier” for water. By comparison, asphalt and concrete driveways are 5% permeable. The owners note that there is a dearth of investment in green products in the U.S. relative to other countries. In 2011, Europe invested over $100 billion in green products, and China surpassed the U.S. with $52.2 billion in green investment (the U.S. invested $50.8 billion)*. Robert posits that there is a growing demand for green products in the U.S., but that it is not being adequately catered to.
Another advantage of the green paving is that it is very easy to customize. The grid’s cells can be filled with different-colored stones, mulch, wood chips, topsoil, seeded grass, and sod. Customers can put in any design they desire, and they can change the design at any time in the future. In addition, the installation of the paving can be done fairly easily, so it is possible for clients who have a Do-It-Yourself orientation to install the paving themselves.
Zeljka and Robert are new to the Binghamton area, but fell in love with their house on the South Side of Binghamton. They say they share a love of Binghamton’s geography, specifically its rivers and rolling hills. The couple, now married for ten years, feels that there are opportunities in Binghamton. “We see the potential in [Binghamton],” says Zeljka. Additionally, Zeljka and Robert say they are happy in Binghamton, and wish to spread that happiness to others. “We are in the ‘people business,’” states Robert. “Paving is just one expression of that business.”
For more information about Green Way Pavements, visit their website at http://greenwaypavements.com.
*Source: MacGuire, E. (2012). Who’s funding the green revolution? CNN. Jun 12. Retrieved from http://edition.cnn.com/2012/06/12/world/renewables-finance-unep/index.html?hpt=hp_c4