The Road Development Agency (RDA) has said the rescoping of road projects is aimed at ensuring that Government rehabilitates as many roads as possible using the limited resource envelope.
RDA acting Director and Chief Executive Officer Eng. George Manyele said Government through RDA had rescoped some road projects, meaning that some roads which were supposed to be upgraded to bituminous standard would now be constructed as all-weather friendly and engineered gravel roads.
Eng. Manyele said this during an interview on ZNBC TV 1 Programme called “My Road”.
He said by constructing all-weather friendly gravel roads, the available limited resource envelope would be able to finance more road projects in the country.
When we talk about an all-weather gravel road, we mean a road that has specified layers of compaction so that it meets the required specifications and does not wear out quickly.
This is a road that is designed in such a way that, although it’s a gravel road, it will not have water collect on top during the rainy season but the water will be able to flow to the shadows and to the drains, ” Eng. Manyele explained.
He said an all-weather friendly road offers acceptable levels of service and motorists are able to drive up to a speed of 80km/h.
Eng. Manyele said the Government had thought it prudent to provide such type of roads so that different users were able to provide services such as Health and education to different parts of the country.
And Eng. Manyele said the RDA is implementing another road project called Improved Rural Connectivity Project (IRCP) which aims at constructing and maintaining feeder roads to support among other things agricultural activities in the country.
This project is being implemented through the Output Based Performance Road Contracts (OPRC).
“This project is being carried out in such a way that in the first two years the contractors would carry out rehabilitation works to bring the road to acceptable standards and thereafter, there would be three years in which the contractor will carry out regular maintenance to sustain the road so that it continues in provide excellent level of performance, ” Eng. Manyele said.
He said works under IRCP had started in Mkushi and Chibombo districts.
Eng. Manyele added that recently RDA signed contracts for works to start in Luapula and Northern Provinces while works for other Provinces were at different levels of procurement processes.