Best Practices for Evaluating Soil and Material Stabilization Products

Project Summary


In Progress

Research Area

Soil Stabilization

Responsible Council / Committee

Chief Engineers' Council / Soils and Materials Standing Committee

Project Funding Partners

Cement Association of Canada; Ville de Montréal; Ministry of Transportation, Ontario; Manitoba Infrastructure; City of Saskatoon; Alberta Transportation; New Brunswick Department of Transportation and Infrastructure; Saskatchewan Highways and Infrastructure; Yukon Highways and Public Works

Project Category

Soils & Materials

Staff Contact


Stabilization of poor soils is a common practice used by many Canadian agencies during road construction.  There are numerous stabilization products available on the market, typically divided into three categories:  physical, chemical, and biological products.  As new products enter the market, Canadian agencies often struggle to obtain information about the products, installation procedures, and the long-term performance of these products. 

Since most of the products are proprietary in nature, there can be significant issues with ultimate lines of responsibility if problems or failures occur. Product evaluation in a field setting is expensive and time consuming.  As a result, agencies experience difficulties in assessing products and their applications to local conditions.

The major project objectives are to:

  • Identify procedures used by Canadian agencies to evaluate and select products to implement on their road construction projects.
  • Identify available material and performance testing.
  • Summarize agencies’ experiences with using soil stabilization products.
  • Summarize long-term performance results.
  • Compile a synthesis of best practices for soil stabilization across Canada and determine best approaches for evaluating stabilization products for inclusion in agencies’ treatment toolbox.

Key tasks to accomplish the project objectives will include:

  • A literature review of typical soil stabilization practices, including an overview of stabilization products available on the Canadian market.
  • Survey of Canadian agencies, industry, product suppliers, contractors and geotechnical experts to determine the most pertinent issues related to stabilization practices and treatments.  
  • A review of research on available soil stabilization treatments and associated performance throughout North America, and internationally.

The work will culminate in a synthesis of best practices for evaluating soil and material stabilization treatments in Canada as well as recommended guidelines to assist Canadian agencies in evaluating and selecting appropriate stabilization products that will lead to long-term performance of roadways.