Relaying of 1,542 km spread over nine national highway (NH) stretches passing through the State will be completed by March.
Executed by the Public Works Department using funds provided by the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, already 734 km had been resurfaced. Official sources told The Hindu that the NH wing of the PWD had been asked to complete the rest of the work by March.
The work would gain momentum as work orders had been issued already. The relaying work came up for discussion at Thursday’s review meeting of PWD works held under the chairmanship of PWD Minister V.K. Ebrahim Kunju.
Bituminous macadam (BM) and bituminous concrete (BC) would be used for relaying of the roads. The work would incur a cost in the range of Rs.60 lakh to Rs.1 crore for every one km, sources said.
On roads where the surface had ruptured, a 30 mm BC layer would be provided. On bad stretches, a 50 mm BM layer would be laid before laying the 30 mm BC layer. A defect liability period of one year had also been included. Sources said the resurfaced NH stretches would last another three to four years.
The wear and tear caused by vehicles and weather conditions created potholes. The NH stretches in the State carried on an average 75,000 cars a day, as compared to their capacity of 15,000 cars. As much as 70 per cent of the road accidents took place on the highways.
Sources said the relaying of the NH would help avoid criticism from road users about the poor quality of the roads. Besides, the PWD hoped that it could prevent rupture of the road surface and thereby prevent potholes.