Toronto, Ontario – Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation (MTO) has received recognition for two environmentally-friendly projects.

Staff at the MTO received the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario’s 2011 Recognition Award for bioretention cells and rubber modified asphalt (RMA). The innovations are used at the carpool lot in Beamsville, Ontario at the Queen Elizabeth Way and Ontario Street interchange.

The projects earned the award, the second in a year that MTO has been so honoured, for the benefits in stormwater management, waste diversion and the promotion of carpooling.

The bioretention cells mimic the natural hydrologic cycle by filtering and evaporating runoff from the parking lot while treating pollution at its source. Approximately 4,000 cubic metres of water are filtered through the system each year.

RMA is made from scrap tires and conventional hot-mix asphalt. About four tonnes of scrap tires were used for the lot, the equivalent of 624 tires. The project will help further develop the technology to create products from scrap tires, and use fewer virgin natural resources in future paving projects.

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