Civic body to try out new material to reduce damage to roads with heavy vehicles traffic
The BMC plans to use geosynthetic products on some stretches of roads in the suburbs on a pilot basismumbai Updated: Jan 18, 2018 22:58 IST
In an attempt to improve the state of roads in the city, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) plans to acquire geosynthetic products, which are used to stabilise terrains. Civic officials said the product can help better roads that become uneven owing to the passage of heavy vehicles. They added that more potholes surface on such roads.
The BMC plans to use geogrid, which is placed between two layers of the road to prevent damage. The material was recently presented to road department officials, who discussed the feasibility of the scheme.
The product will be tested at a few stretches in the suburbs.“The new material will be used on a pilot project basis. If successful, it will be implemented at all roads,” said Vijay Singhal, additional municipal commissioner.
A road department official said the number of places at which the material will be tested depends on the amount of free trial samples they get. “The product is expected to significantly improve load distribution when heavy vehicles are on the road. We will test it at specific roads that witness heavy traffic and then monitor the situation. We were offered the material cheaply — at Rs68 per square meter,” he said.
James John, citizen activist, said the city’s roads are in a pathetic state. “The problem is the BMC’s culture of overlooking these roads.Roads constructed and inspected by NGOs and activists last for 10 years. The BMC needs to implement stringent rules while constructing roads to ensure that they are sustainable. Even though officials have been importing new materials, there has been no improvement,” he said.
For past few years, the civic body has been at the receiving end of complaints over the bad state of roads. Every monsoon, roads are riddled with potholes owing to poor-quality construction, which the road scam highlighted. Now, the BMC is using material imported from Israel and Austria to fill potholes.
“The imported material is not enough for the city’s 1,900-km-long roads. The BMC plans to make a similar mix in its own plants at a cheaper rate,” said an official from the road department.