Departments > Public Works > Microsurfacing


As part of Ferguson Township's roadway maintenance program, each year a number of streets are selected for a process called microsurfacing. Certain streets have selected to be microsurfaced as part of this year’s program. In the past, we have received several inquiries about the process and thought that the following information may be helpful.

Microsurfacing is a pavement preservation technique that has been used annually by Ferguson Township on residential roads for the past 16 years.

Below is a summary of the process:

  • Microsurfacing is a cold-mix paving system, not a hot applied asphalt pavement. The material consists of small aggregate, asphalt emulsion, water and mineral fillers, and is generally applied in a 3/8" thick layer. Microsurfacing applies a durable asphalt seal to roads that have begun to show signs of aging and minor distress. By retarding the surface’s natural breakdown, this process extends the pavement’s lifespan 7 to 10 years. Microsurfacing adds no structural value to the pavement; therefore, roadways that have deteriorated beyond a certain point are generally not good candidates for this process.
  • Microsurfacing is applied from a single unit paving machine that mixes the components just before application to the pavement surface. The new surface is initially a dark brown color and changes to a finished black surface as the water is chemically ejected and the surface cures. The quick setting emulsion generally permits traffic on the finished surface within 1 to 2 hours after application.
  • Initially, the finished product appears coarse and many of the overlap seams are visible. Over time, as vehicles travel on the road, the surface will become smoother and the seams will mesh together.
  • The contractor is provided with trash collection schedule and needs to coordinate the work in accordance with that schedule.
  • If brush collection conflicts with the microsurfacing schedule, brush collection will be rescheduled when the roads are accessible.
  • The contractor is required to provide notice to residents (typically a door hanger) that their road will be microsurfaced and to make plans for alternate parking.
  • Just prior to the actual work, the contractor will place "No Parking" signs on the affected roadway.
  • Typically half a road is closed for microsurfacing at a time.
  • The length of time the road is closed depends on air temperature and humidity and whether one or two passes of microsurfacing is applied.
  • Exact times of day that work will be performed cannot be provided.

Thank you for your patience and cooperation during this process. If you have any further questions please call the Ferguson Township Public Works Department at (814) 238-4651.

Microsurfacing FAQs