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San Antonio is the first city in Texas to launch pilot cool pavement mitigating heat

The pilot project will take place in the Dignowity Hill neighborhood east of downtown.

SAN ANTONIO — The Alamo City will be the first city in Texas to participate in a pilot project that will attempt to cool down pavement temperatures.

The City of San Antonio posted on their website that Public Works is "leading the way to make our streets cooler, healthier, and more sustainable" in alignment with the heat mitigation strategies in the SA Climate Ready, Climate Action & Adaptation Plan.

The pilot project will take place in the Dignowity Hill neighborhood east of downtown.

"PWD pavement rehabilitation crews began applying a cool pavement seal coat, donated by GuardTop, at the east end of the Hays Street Bridge, west of Mesquite Street. San Antonio joins Los Angeles and Phoenix in utilizing this type of material," the City says.

They said in collaboration with UTSA, the analysis will determine surface temperature decreases and assist in guiding future installations of cool pavement.

“We’re not waiting for climate change to exacerbate the heat in San Antonio, we’re planning and acting now” said Chief Sustainability Officer Doug Melnick. “Cool pavement is one of the proven tools that we can use to provide relief to the hottest neighborhoods in the City.”

Another big reason for the pilot project is higher nighttime temperatures lead to more energy consumption, more greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution and other harmful effects.

So, how will it work?

They said cool pavement is a water-based asphalt treatment that is applied on top of the existing asphalt pavement to reflect the sun’s rays while protecting and preserving asphalt pavements. 

"It is part of an overall approach to achieve neighborhood-level cooling by concentrating multiple investments, which also includes planting shade trees, expanding vegetated parkways, and installing shade structures in the hottest areas of the San Antonio," the City says.

Read more about the project here.

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