When it comes to hard surfaces for pavement and other similar applications you generally have two choices: Asphalt or Concrete.
Even though both surfaces are similar there are key differences.

Asphalt is a flexible pavement, which is used mainly for road construction because of its low cost, and installation time.
Asphalt pavement can be driven on the same day it is laid.
However, asphalt requires regular maintenance to keep it in good working condition, where concrete does not.

Concrete is a rigid pavement and is more expensive because it is very labour-intensive to construct.
Because concrete is more aesthetically pleasing, it is often used for driveways, patios and other small surface area locations.
It is also less susceptible to water and petroleum products, so it is used for drainage solutions (including gutters) and gas stations.

The pros & cons of asphalt

It is made from a combination of stone and sand fused together from material left over from the production of gasoline, diesel and kerosene.

Pros of asphalt

– Relatively cheap (much cheaper than concrete).

– Preferred in cold climates.

– Repair is easy as it can be repaired or re-layered and does not need to be replaced, up to a point.

Cons of asphalt

– Somewhat short lifespan.

– Maintenance is required every few years as it needs to be resealed.

– Has an oily texture that softens in heat and sunlight.

The pros & cons of concrete

Concrete is another hard surface material that is commonly used in driveways and other hard surface applications. Cement is mixed with sand and gravel to create concrete.

Pros of concrete

– Lasts a long time, 30-40 years, if constructed properly.

– Low maintenance as it does not need to be resealed, especially in warmer climates.

– Better in warm climates as it does not soften.

Cons of concrete

– Prone to cracking, it is expensive and not easy to repair.

– Salt will damage it. (it should be sealed if salt is being used)

– Cost is very high, even twice as high as asphalt.