Saturday, September 11, 2004

Total relaying of roads sought for

Roads to hell: Only total revamp will help
Some say the 40-year-old roads cannot take the load while others complain that the road-laying techniques are unscientific.
Deccan Herald

The trail of destruction the recent rains have left on Bangalore’s roads have once again thrown up the question on the attention given to quality and scientific aspects by the agencies responsible for road laying. More so when repaired roads themselves have to be repaired all over again.

Bangalore Mahanagara Palike Chief Engineer Ramegowda said that pothole filling works will be completed by September 19. Noting that as many as 16,100 potholes had been identified in the city, he said that each ward has been allotted Rs 1.5 lakh for pot holes repairs. Quality inspection squads are also formed to monitor them, he said.

At the same time, he clarified that works on tarring the roads will have to wait till rains subside, say November and after, he said.

Opposition leader in the BMP Council B R Nanjundappa noted that quality control aspects of road laying or pothole repairs are many. Pothole repairs during rains can be effective only if cold tar is used, the BMP is not doing so; additionally vehicular traffic on the roads where such repairs are done should be banned for a day or two, but that is not possible in Bangalore, he observed.

One BMP engineer attributed the problem to the age of the existing roads. Filling and relaying will not help, the sound solution is to lay all-new roads, he said. Use of jelly stones is not a scientific mode of pot hole repair, rather the filler substance should be finely ground, he explained.

Mayor P R Ramesh meanwhile noted that road management is best left to private parties. Noting that there was no point in expecting roads as old as 30 to 40 years to bear the increased traffic load, he said that plans are to hand them over to private parties for a period of three years.

Roads which were upgraded under the bond scheme as recently as three years ago too have fallen under repair, he noted and said that a total revamp using tar mixed with plastic may be necessary.


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