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Maintenance: Introduction




This Chapter Provides the Background to the Various Roadwork Strategies Applied on Roads.

Roadwork strategies vary among road authorities as there is no single “best” strategy, nor is there a universal set of criteria that can be applied to selecting the remedial works to roads. While in general terms there are undoubtedly roadwork strategies that are more appropriate than others, given specific conditions, the factors that influence the selection process are varied and complex. Some of the factors that influence the application of specific roadworks and the selection of general strategies for national roads include:

  • historical performance;
  • materials availability;
  • availability of funds;
  • traffic volume and composition;
  • road classification and adjacent land use, and
  • environment.

Perhaps one of the biggest factors, however, is the ultimate effect that the roadworks is expected to have on the pavement’s short- and long-term performance and hence its effect on road users. Taking into consideration the above mentioned, roadworks are classified into the following hierarchical structure of category, class, and type.

Works Categories

Works categories are loosely organised by the effect that the roadworks has on performance as well as the time in the pavement’s life cycle that the roadworks is applied. Roadworks are divided under two categories:

  • MAINTENANCE (M): Maintenance of the existing pavement involves performing roadworks required to arrest the deterioration of roads, and to lower road user costs by providing a smooth running surface, and keeping the road open on a continuous basis.
  • DEVELOPMENT (D): Development works aim to expand road network capacity, provide stronger pavements, and improve road geometric characteristics in order to minimise the total cost of road transportation and mitigate environmental impacts.
Works Classes

Within each category, roadworks are considered in classes. Works classes consider roadworks in terms of their frequency of application and the budget head used to fund them. The following three works classes exist under maintenance:

  • ROUTINE AD-HOC (R): This comprises works that need to be undertaken on an ad-hoc basis to address extensive road reserve maintenance backlogs or extensive minor pavement related repairs that cannot be performed under the routine operations contracts. Read more.
  • PERIODIC MAINTENANCE (P): This comprises works that are scheduled to be undertaken at intervals of several years. Read more.
  • SPECIAL MAINTENACE (S): This comprises works whose frequencies cannot be estimated with certainty in advance and is normally emergency driven. Read more.
  • ROUTINE OPERATIONS (O): This comprises works that need to be undertaken on an annual basis to ensure effective operation of the road facility. Read more.

For development the following four classes are defined:

  • STRENGTHENING (S): Strengthening typically comprises works that aim to restore or improve the structural integrity of pavements at the end of there structural life, that has no foreseeable quality of service (i.e. traffic congestion) problems in the medium to long term. Read more.
  • IMPROVEMENT (I): This comprises works that aim to improve the quality of service on roads with adequate remaining pavement structural life, but with an unacceptable quality of service. Read more.
  • NEW FACILITIES (N): Works to create a new pavement. Read more.
Works Types

Within each class, roadworks are considered in types. This considers road works in terms of their impact (or effects) on the road infrastructure. Under each works type, there are several works activities or operations considered in terms of the pavement type to which they can be applied, and the technique used.