New cost-efficient and eco-friendly method for road constructionView(s):
By Senuka jayakody
A pilot project to introduce a low-cost road construction method will begin soon.
Road Development Authority (RDA) Chairman Chaminda Athuluwage said they are searching for a low-cost method to maintain Sri Lanka’s existing road system.
Accordingly, they have considered a proposal to use a special powder instead of an ABC base–which is a rocky base–in road construction.
The powder would be mixed with soil, sprayed with water and compacted with the road. The CBR (California Bearing Ratio) value, which concerns the strength of the road, was checked by RDA and accepted.
“My idea was to support people in rural areas, who are unable to transport patients when needed, due to the poor quality of the roads in those areas. They also need good quality roads to transport agricultural produce to the towns,” Gamini Wickramaratne, who proposed the new technology, said. In 2017, he completed the one kilometre Medawachchiya-Rambewa-Pallankulama road. He began constructing the road in January 2017 and completed it by March 2017, and the road has not deteriorated as of now.
He said he hired labourers from the area to work on the project and only four machines were used, making the project cost efficient. Since he did not use an ABC base, a few years ago, Eastern Province Governor Anuradha Yahampath, had decided to hand a project over to him. However, due to COVID-19, this project came to a standstill.
Furthermore, Mr. Wickramaratne said no materials would be imported for his road construction method.
He also expected to build culverts under roads for his future projects, so pipes or wires could be replaced without digging up the roads.
At a meeting Mr. Wickramaratne had with Transport and Highways Minister Bandula Gunawardena on Friday, it was decided to accept his proposal and a pilot project was handed over to him, Mr. Athuluwage said.
Moreover, the Central Environment Authority (CEA) had issued a letter certifying the SSP (Special Stabilizing Powder)-68 Pavement Material Powder as environmentally friendly.
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