Best Practices for Improving Subgrade Drainage

Status:  Complete
Report Date:  06/12/2023


Poor drainage may reduce the life of a roadway by 50%, but subsurface drainage systems can be costly. Considerable research exists on the design and construction of roadway drainage systems. Counties throughout Minnesota have experience with the design, construction and maintenance of these systems. However, there was a need to synthesize the available research and firsthand experience into a practical manual. This project identified the successes and lessons learned to create a best practices guide that will improve how subsurface drainage is implemented. The focus was not solely on new construction but also on how to update and maintain existing roads, particularly frost-susceptible gravel roads.

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