A steep slope up to your home can pose a challenge when the time comes to build the driveway. There are a few tactics you can use to ensure the drive is attractive and functional.

1. Soil Stabilization

Putting in a strong base is the first task if you want a well-paved steep driveway, but slope erosion can put more pressure on the base material. For this reason your paving contractor may recommend soil stabilization prior to beginning base construction and paving. This usually requires adding binders to the soil and then compacting it well. The binders prevent erosion and increase soil stability.

2. Integrated Drainage

Water traveling down a slope is going to take the path of least resistance, which is likely to be the paved drive. The water may also pool up at the base of the drive where it levels out to the street. Your contractor may recommend integrated drains, which are installed through the paving and feed into an underground drain that routes to the nearest storm drain. These are often installed into the bottom of the drive.

3. Material Elasticity

Normal thermal expansion and contractions of the paving combined with the pressure of the slope can lead to cracks throughout the paving. Asphalt is more elastic than concrete, so it will suffer less thermal damage and is often the recommended paving for a slope. If you prefer concrete, then it may be necessary to install additional expansion joints between paving slabs in order to increase elasticity and combat expansion cracks. 

4. Traction Support

Rain and ice can make a steep driveway slick and difficult to navigate. The right surfacing on the new paving can solve the issue. Your contractor can add texture to the paving to help increase traction. Adding an aggregate and resin layer is another tactic used to add traction to slick paving, and the aggregate layer is quite decorative. Make sure to add some sort of traction support so that it is safe to use the driveway year around.

5. Barrier Additions

Barriers may also be a good idea, especially if you are worried about sliding or driving astray when backing down the driveway. The barriers don't have to be large, just a low curb or wall is typically sufficient for keeping a car at low speeds on course. Your contractor will integrate the barrier curbing into the driveway to create a seamless look.

Contact a residential paving contractor if you need help with a steep driveway.