LANDSCAPE DESIGN FOR DRIVEWAYS
Superior Landscaping Ltd.
Landscape Design for Driveways
MATERIAL CHOICE: PAVERS, POURED CONCRETE OR POURED STAMPED CONCRETE?
Material choice is the most frequently asked question I get about driveways. Most of us see the “norm” as being a poured concrete driveway, and depending on your budget, that may be the best choice. But poured concrete driveways often come with a host of problems. They’re prone to cracking because the base material is usually thinner than we’d like to see and not compacted as well as it should be for a sturdy base. The cracking of poured concrete can also be caused by the material itself. Poured concrete is usually 3,000-4,000 PSI (or pounds per square inch), which is the amount of pressure it can absorb before it fails.
In addition to the potential for cracking, some clients dislike this material because it’s not very attractive. Another common question we get is about stamped concrete, which adds a better visual aesthetic to the design than basic poured concrete. However, stamped concrete comes with added cost that often puts it more aligned with the price of a concrete paver driveway. Additionally, to control costs, the added color in stamped concrete driveways is often only added to the surface, which destroys the aesthetic when the concrete cracks.
For nearly the same cost as stamped poured concrete, you can opt for concrete pavers instead. In contrast to poured concrete, pavers are typically 12,000-15,000 PSI, which means it can withstand substantially more weight before cracking. Pavers are often used for high-weight driveways such as those for fire stations or airport tarmacs. We recently designed and installed a large driveway for a horse farm to withstand large trucks and horse trailers.