Our driveway, oh boy, is something we've lived with for six years. It's like Dr Jeckle and Mr Hyde. Half is perfectly presentable, the other half is somewhat of a monster to navigate. The dirt ruts are so bad, I've had my car exhaust-pipe welded back together, twice!
The big dipper
The driveway climbs a slope that needs some traction, and dirt inevitably travels down hill. We had the funds to have the front section of our driveway concreted by professionals, before we moved in six years ago - but the latter was a little project we always meant to finish ourselves. Settling on the design was the main issue. We learned with concrete, that rainwater travels down the slope very quickly. We weren't in a hurry to start pouring concrete again.
In the end, we decided on turf stones, which is a concrete grid paver. It allows the water through, dispersing the energy, so water doesn't travel fast. We had two pallets of pavers delivered and starting to lay them. They will be filled with stones to help with drainage.
The main job we've been working on is the concrete stop, which will butt the pavers and prevent them from travelling down hill too. We could install wooden stakes through the grids (and may yet do this) but we wanted a concrete stop at the bottom of the slope, all the same.
Rebar leftovers, surplus to house build
We installed the form-work on Tuesday and started pouring cement the next day! A work colleague of David's loaned us a cement mixer. It was a lovely stroke of luck, that was until we tried using it. Bolts were undone, fan belts were loose and the drive wheel wasn't attached properly. Thanks to David's mechanical sleuthing, we had it fixed within an hour. Then it took 2 more hours to finish pouring the cement. We're still very grateful for the loaner.
Drive wheel fitted and secured properly
How is it that I'm so stoked about a road though? Here in the Lockyer Valley, our rain events tend to be hard and fast. Add a hill to that, and in no-time there is, a la', erosion. I don't like erosion, I need the land to stay put. But things like access roads are an intrusion on nature, and poorly designed ones can really cause damage. That's why we procrastinated so long on the design. We wanted something that would counter the energy caused by installing a hard surface driveway. The grid pavers should achieve that.
Six courses laid
We're pretty chuffed with our progress to date. The worst part (the concreting) is over. I'm glad we can put it behind us now. David and I worked diligently as a team, and our daughter was able to keep her little brother entertained (just). Thank goodness we can almost mark off another project from our list. As you can tell, we're not in a hurry - six years is a long time to finish a driveway.
We hope to catch-up on all those projects we put aside to have our baby recently. Which reminds me of a funny story (at the time it wasn't) but going up the driveway, when I was in full labour, was no picnic. The joys of being a hard-working, money poor couple. Our baby arrived safely, and we can now marvel at the soon-to-be finished driveway!
All roads may lead to Rome, but I'll just settle for the 30 metres to our house...hello civilization.