Roadside Management Toolbox: Patterned Concrete

Example photo of Patterned Concrete Another Example photo of Patterned Concrete

What is This Treatment

Patterned (or stamped) concrete is standard concrete pavement that is colored and/or stained and imprinted with a pattern prior to curing. The mix used for patterned concrete shall conform to 2010 Caltrans Standard Specification section 90-2, Minor Concrete.

When to Use This Design Concept ?

Best uses for patterned concrete pavement are in urban and suburban areas at high visibility locations including road edges, median strips and slope paving. Concrete is a good choice when longevity, visual quality and context adaptability outweigh initial cost considerations.


  • When designed and constructed correctly, patterned concrete has one of the lowest life cycle costs.
  • The designer may choose from a wide variety of colors and patterns to match existing community elements.
  • Integral color and surface treatments may be combined to add variation and depth.
  • Patterned concrete is better suited to slopes than stamped asphalt.
  • According to FHWA Report No. FHWA/TX-04/0-4162-2, Dynamic Response of Guardrail Systems Encased in Pavement Mow Strips (PDF) , concrete paving areas under guard railing that include grout filled leave-outs at posts are considered to have a high probablilty of passing NCHRP Report 350


  • Repairs are difficult to match to original color and pattern
  • Construction is more labor intensive and expensive than stamped asphalt.
  • Placement under guardrail requires a "leave-out" section the post. See Vegetation Control (Minor Concrete) for more information.

Specifications and Details

  • 2010 Standard Specification section 90-2, Minor Concrete
  • 2010 Nonstandard Special Provision (NSSP) - Patterned Concrete - Under Development
  • 2010 Standard Specification section 73 Concrete Curbs and Sidewalks
  • 2006 Nonstandard Special Provision (NSSP) - Patterned Concrete (DOC)
  • Nonstandard Details Patterened Concrete 1, and Patterned Concrete 2


  • $100 - $125/yd2 Slope work and traffic control requirements require unit price adjustments.

Updated May 24, 2012