The maintenance and rehabilitation of roads in a large metropolitan municipality

This paper deals with typical current challenges pertaining to the maintenance and rehabilitation of roads in a large metropolitan municipality. These challenges include a number of aspects including planning, technical designs, supervision quality, contractual issues and funding considerations. The paper is based on the experience of the authors whilst working on maintenance and rehabilitation projects for Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality and some examples are also given from other large municipalities. Timeous maintenance and rehabilitation is essential to ensure the most cost effective investment on roads during their design life. Delaying an optimal rehabilitation activity such as a reseal will result in massive additional rehabilitation costs in the future. It was found that these delayed rehabilitation costs result in additional costs of 5 to 10 times more than the optimal maintenance and rehabilitation costs. Numerous examples have been observed of incorrect technical solutions and specifications during the rehabilitation of many roads. Problems include stripping of seals placed in winter, deformation of asphalt, particularly at intersections, poor preparation prior to resurfacing resulting in premature failures, wasteful expenditure by patching roads without subsequent sealing and poor pothole repair methods. It is the authors’ opinion that many of the problems experienced could have been prevented by proper pavement evaluations, asphalt mix designs, seal designs, specifications and, most importantly, effective site supervision. Many municipalities do the construction and supervision work in-house and do not make use of consultants. In some cases they also prepare the tender documents (including specifications) to be implemented by consultants. When consultants are appointed, problems that have been observed by the authors include lack of pavement engineering skills, limited budgets for special investigations, limited scope to change specifications and resource constraints due to the as-and-when nature of the contracts and extremely competitive bidding. These factors have resulted in limited use of innovative technology. The paper recommends various practical and innovative technical solutions and proposes improvements to current contractual and funding models.


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: 7p
  • Monograph Title: 11th Conference on Asphalt Pavements for Southern Africa: CAPSA15, 16-19 August 2015, Sun City, South Africa

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01597096
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB
  • Files: ATRI
  • Created Date: Apr 22 2016 11:14AM