Cobblestones: the great paving system of the historical italian towns

Elvis Elvis

Cobblestones are superior landscaping stones that can help you to create a unique traditional style for your surfacing works.

The basic elements are cobblestones from the sea or quarries, with dimensions of between 8-15 cm for the long axis and 4-10 cm for the short axis. If the stones come from a quarry having been worked mechanically they will not have the rounded surfaces due to the rolling action, but will have different sizes and spiky faces.

The harder rocks, like the Italian porphyry, produce cobble stones which tend to be spherical, with colours ranging from grey to red to violet. Before laying, the cobble stones should be washed to remove any earth or dirt.

Cobblestones: the great paving system of the historical italian towns

The cobble stones may be laid in three ways with different results in terms of function and appearance:

  • on their head, i.e. With the long axis vertical
  • flat
  • sideways if the cobble is a flat ovoid.
  • The choice of position depends on the aesthetic or functional result which is required and the shape and size of the cobble stones themselves.

    There are two techniques for laying:

  • The traditional method in dry sand: this system is no longer in use due to the tendency of the cobbles to move and the consequent need for continuous, costly maintenance.
  • The modern technique:it uses a binding material in the bedding mortar and the consolidation of the cobble stones by filling in the gaps between them with mortar.

    Example of exterior paving in porphyry cobblestones

    - supply and laying of porphyry paving with size and appearance chosen by the client in rounded cobblestones of uniform size, minimum diameter …..cm,

    - laid by hand (with geometry chosen by client) and set for 2/3 of their length on bedding of minimum thickness 8 cm (or 10 cm) of sand of correct grain size ready mixed dry with R325 type cement in the ratio 10 kg/m2.

    The cobblestones must be laid close together with the upper surfaces planar, including any shaping necessary for draining of surface water.