Cool Pavements Turn Down the Heat on City Streets


NORTH HOLLYWOOD - This week, the Bureau of Street Services completed a brand new cool pavement installation on Atoll Avenue, from Barbara Ann Street to Gault Street. The pilot project, which applies a light gray coating onto the pavement, aims to reduce temperatures of street surfaces.

As the region faces continued high temperatures and increased heat waves due to climate change, conventional asphalt pavements can reach temperatures of 120 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit during peak seasons, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The reflective, light gray coating known as CoolSeal is one of LA's solutions to cut roadway temperatures and curb the effect of urban heat islands, which occur when heat absorbed by the asphalt during the day can seep out at night, causing temperatures to rise significantly higher in urban areas than in nearby non-urban communities. Results from preliminary tests show that the coating reduces street surface temperatures by more than 10 degrees. 

Los Angeles is the first city in California to test this project. If successful, the pavement sealant could be added to thousands of miles of LA street projects in the years to come.