Current development and research activities on the Minor Roads Program in Kenya are described. The relatively rapid deterioration of unpaved roads compared to paved roads demands that maintenance be programmed rather than respond to changes in surface condition. Road maintenance in developing countries is normally organized on a district or regional basis using ministry teams or contractors. However, the use of lengthmen to undertake routine and possibly recurrent maintenance activities may result in more rapid and cost-effective correction of deficiencies and an improved level of service in some circumstances. The Minor Roads Program is a labor-based improvement and maintenance program for low- and medium-trafficked roads in 28 districts of Kenya with a high agricultural potential. The program commenced in 1986 and is projected to improve 4,500 km of roads to gravel all-weather standard over a 5-year period and to establish maintenance systems. The program will also maintain some 8,000 km of roads constructed under the previous labor-based Rural Access Roads Program. People living alongside the roads are utilized on a casual basis to carry out all improvements and maintenance supported by simple agricultural equipment for certain operations, particularly on the higher-trafficked roads. Routine maintenance on the roads is carried out using a lengthman system. An ex-construction worker is appointed to each section, typically 1.5 to 2.0 km in length. He is provided with the necessary hand tools and is paid for working 3 days per week on the road. This allows him time to continue to work on his land on other days. The principal aim was to establish productivity standards for a range of routine and recurrent maintenance activities carried out by lengthmen using mostly hand tools. The current research will evaluate the influence of geometry, climate, traffic, and materials on the amount of maintenance required and define optimum lengths of road relative to labor inputs for these variables.

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 41-52
  • Monograph Title: Fifth International Conference on Low-Volume Roads May 19-23 1991, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; volumes 1 and 2
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00611743
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 030905715
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Aug 31 1991 12:00AM