Road construction is a common civil works project. Most people enjoy well-paved roads; however, they do not understand the intricacies that go towards road construction. Below is an extract detailing the road construction process.
During the planning phase, the following is likely to take place:
- Economic assessments to determine the return on investment.
- Environmental and geotechnical evaluations to establish the ecological impact of the construction process. Geotechnical surveys examine soil conditions to determine the viability of the project.
- Consultation with local communities to evaluate their concerns over the construction process. For instance, they might demand safety signage and compensation if the road encroaches on their property.
- Road design details the length of the road, its width, route, and the location of additional structures such as bridges.
- A formal appraisal to determine how much the project costs.
Finding A Contractor
Once government agencies approve the project, they find a suitable contractor to build the road. Typically, interested contractors must meet a prescribed qualification criterion. For instance, they are required to show previous experience, have specific licences and insurance covers. Moreover, the contractor should have adequate financing or access to credit. The prequalified contractors then submit bids for the project. These bids undergo thorough assessments before the government agencies award the contract to one or several contractors.
Road construction work begins with site clearance. Then, the contractor sets markers to show the level of the road. After this, the contractor conducts earthworks to ensure a level surface. Depending on the road design, earthworks could include excavation, digging and grading. Consequently, the contractor sets the subgrade. It is a thick layer of compressed aggregate that increases the road's structural integrity. The contractor then creates a drainage system before paving the road. In most cases, construction work involves extra work such as creating sidewalks, building landscapes, installing lighting, safety signage and barriers. Usually, these works are conducted after the paving works.
Safety is at the heart of any road construction project. Therefore, contractors are contractually obligated to observe safety. For instance, they must use barriers to prevent unauthorised access to the site. Moreover, they should equip their employees with personal protective gear. The plant used at the site must be in excellent condition and operated by experienced personnel. Finally, the contractor must have a traffic management plan to prevent motor accidents at the site.
Road construction included preliminary assessments, finding a contractor and executing the construction work.