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Report of the Expert Committee on

Be~tPrlct~ce~~nRoadJ
Con~trUJct~on
(Volume I: Main Report)

May 2016
Ministry of Road Transport and Highways

Govt. of India
TABLE OF CONTENTS

1. COMMITTEE FORMATION AND TERMS OF REFERENCE ................................................... 8


1.1 Formation of the Committee: ....................................................................................................... 8
1.2 Constitution of the Committee: .................................................................................................... 8
1.3 New Members:.............................................................................................................................. 8
1.4 Committee's Terms of Reference: ................................................................................................ 9
1.5 Meetings of the Committee: ......................................................................................................... 9
1.6 Address by the Hon. Union Minister:............................................................................................ 9
1.7 Invitees to the Committee's Meetings:....................................................................................... 10
1.8 Presentations of Innovative Technology Options: ...................................................................... 10
1.9 Proceedings:................................................................................................................................ 10
2. MEASURES FOR PROMOTION OF INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES .................................... 11
2.1 National Highway Development Project:.................................................................................... 11
2.2 Review of Current Procurement and Implementation Regime: ................................................. 11
2.3 Measures towards Enhancing Innovative Technologies on a Continual Basis: .......................... 16
2.4 Declaration of Intent ................................................................................................................... 16
2.5 Constitution of a Standing Panel of Experts: .............................................................................. 16
3. IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES............................................................................................ 20
3.1 Institutional Set Up ..................................................................................................................... 20
3.2 Government Officials in Charge of Implementation ................................................................... 20
3.3 Consultants ................................................................................................................................. 21
3.4 Recommendations towards Consultancy Procurement ............................................................. 23
3.5 Indian Roads Congress ................................................................................................................ 24
3.6 Pre- Construction Activities and Permits .................................................................................... 25
3.7 Construction/ Completion Issues ................................................................................................ 27
3.8 Recommendations towards Improvements in Implementation of the Projects ........................ 28
3.9 Equipment ................................................................................................................................... 31
3.10 Need for Vocational Training of Skilled Workmen ..................................................................... 32
3.11 Issues pertaining to Road Safety ................................................................................................. 32
4. RIGID (CONCRETE) PAVEMENTS ................................................................................... 38
4.1 Concrete Pavements ................................................................................................................... 38
4.2 Preference of concrete pavements in certain areas ................................................................... 38
4.3 Continuously Reinforced Concrete Pavement-(CRCP) ................................................................ 39
4.4 Prestressed Concrete Panels....................................................................................................... 40
4.5 Concrete Overlay over Existing Bituminous Surface................................................................... 41
4.6 Bituminous Overlay over Jointed Rigid Pavement ...................................................................... 43
4.7 Self-Compacting Concrete for Pavements .................................................................................. 44
4.8 Research on Concrete Roads ...................................................................................................... 44
5. FLEXIBLE (BITUMINOUS) PAVEMENTS .......................................................................... 46
5.1 New Technologies for Flexible Pavements ................................................................................. 46
5.2 Use of Gap Graded Wearing Course with Rubberized Bitumen ................................................. 47
5.3 Bituminous Concrete with Polymer Modified Bitumen .............................................................. 48

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5.4 Use of Modifiers: Research to facilitate Quantification of Benefits ........................................... 48
5.5 Bituminous Overlay over Jointed Rigid Pavement ...................................................................... 49
5.5 Use of Warm Asphalt for reduction in Environmental Pollution ................................................ 49
5.6 Stabilization using Cement / Lime / Fly ash/ Cementitious Chemical Additives for subgrade,Sub
base and Base Course ............................................................................................................................. 50
5.7 Functionalized polyethylene modifier for Modified bitumen (equivalent to VG 40) ................. 51
5.8 Glass fibre polyester hybrid Geosynthetic Paving Mat ............................................................... 52
5.9 Use of nano-technology for different aspects of road construction .......................................... 52
5.10 Cold in-situ recycling (CIR) of asphalt pavement ........................................................................ 52
5.11 Hot In-situ Recycling ................................................................................................................... 53
5.12 Thickness of renewal coat and type of treatment for Ministry and NHDP projects .................. 53
5.13 Use of Geo-Synthetic Materials in Pavement ............................................................................. 54
5.14 Imported bitumen ....................................................................................................................... 55
6. TUNNELS...................................................................................................................... 56
6.1 Types of Contracts ...................................................................................................................... 56
6.2 Stages of Tunnel Construction .................................................................................................... 56
6.3 Improvements Required at the Planning Stage .......................................................................... 56
6.4 Design Stage ................................................................................................................................ 60
6.5 Bidding Stage .............................................................................................................................. 61
6.6 Construction Stage ...................................................................................................................... 61
6.7 Provision of Tunnel Cladding ...................................................................................................... 65
6.8 Improvements Required in Operation and Maintenance........................................................... 65
6.9 Mobile Phone Connectivity ......................................................................................................... 66
7. BRIDGES ...................................................................................................................... 67
7.1 Background ................................................................................................................................. 67
7.2 Need for Advanced Technologies ............................................................................................... 67
7.3 Materials ..................................................................................................................................... 68
7.4 Codes and Standards .................................................................................................................. 70
7.5 Economy...................................................................................................................................... 72
7.6 Aesthetics .................................................................................................................................... 72
7.7 Superstructure ............................................................................................................................ 73
7.8 Pre-casting of Sections in Factories ............................................................................................ 75
7.9 Pile Foundations.......................................................................................................................... 77
7.10 Well/ Caisson Foundations ......................................................................................................... 77
7.11 Consultants ................................................................................................................................. 78
7.12 Miscellaneous ............................................................................................................................. 78
7.13 Accelerated Bridge Construction (ABC) ...................................................................................... 79
8. RESEARCH IN HIGHWAYS SECTOR............................................................................... 107
8.1 Importance of Research ............................................................................................................ 107
8.2 Strengthening of Research Facilities & Infrastructure .............................................................. 108
8.3 Selection of Research Projects .................................................................................................. 109
8.4 Research Funding ...................................................................................................................... 110
8.5 Indicative List of Research Topics ............................................................................................. 110
9. SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS .......................................................................... 114

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9.1 The Co ittee s e o e datio s a e su a ized as elow: ............................................. 114
9.2 Measures to promote Innovative Technologies, Materials and Equipment ............................ 114
9.3 Implementation Issues .............................................................................................................. 114
9.4 Rigid (Concrete) Pavements ...................................................................................................... 117
9.5 Flexible (Bituminous) Pavements.............................................................................................. 118
9.6 Tunnels ...................................................................................................................................... 118
9.7 Bridges ...................................................................................................................................... 119
9.8 Research in the Highway Sector ............................................................................................... 122

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1. COMMITTEE FORMATION AND TERMS OF REFERENCE
1.1 Formation of the Committee:

The National Highway Development Project envisages the upgradation of the existing
National Highways network and construction of new National Highways in the country. The
project is one of a u p e ede ted ag itude. I ie of the Go e e t s thrust on
infrastructure development, considerable investments are expected in the road sector,
especially the National Highways. The current target of highway development contemplates
construction of approximately 30 km of road every day1. Emphasis has been placed by the
Ministry of Road Transport and Highways on the enhancement of speed of implementation
to achieve this target. Since the aspects of quality, speed and timely completion of
construction become extremely important in this context, the Ministry decided to constitute
an expert committee under the chairmanship of Shri S.R. Tambe, Former Secretary, PWD,
Government of Maharashtra, under its memorandum dated 25th May 2015 (Annexure 1.1)
to recommend to the Ministry the best practices to be followed towards realizing this
objective.

1.2 Constitution of the Committee:

The constitution of the committee is as follows:

1. .Shri. S.R. Tambe Former Secretary Public Works Chairman


Department, Govt. of Maharashtra
2. Prof. Mahesh Tandon Managing Director, Tandon Member
Consultants, New Delhi
3 Shri. P.G. Venkatram L&T Infrastructure Engineering Ltd. Member
Chennai
4. Dr. Sunil Bose Former Dy. Director, CRRI, New Delhi Member
5. Prof. Ravi Sinha IIT Mumbai Member
6. Shri. S.M. Sabnis Chief Engineer, MMRDA Mumbai Member
7. Shri. R.K. Singh Chief Engineer (Roads/Bridge), S &R, Member Secretary
MORT&H, Delhi

1.3 New Members:

The Ministry inducted Dr. L.R. Kadiyali, as a member of the Committee under its
Memorandum dated 16th September 2015 (Annexure 1.2). The Ministry also inducted Shri.

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http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Modi-government-sets-target-of-30km-of-highways-a-
day/articleshow/49110251.cms

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P.L. Bongirwar (Former Principal Secretary, Maharashtra PWD) and Shri. R.M. Vidwans,
Tunnel Expert as members of the Committee under its Memorandum dated 5 th January 2016.
(Annexure 1.3)

1.4 Committee's Terms of Reference:

The Committee was asked to work on the following terms of reference.

1.4.1 The Committee was expected to study the best practices used in selected developed
countries of the world in respect of material and machinery for economical, durable,
speedy and aesthetic construction of bridges, flyovers, tunnels etc.

1.4.2 The Committee was expected to study how to expedite the construction works
economically in respect of roads, bridges, flyovers, tunnels etc.

1.4.3 The Committee was expected to recommend such practices/ technologies for Indian
conditions.

1.4.4 The Committee was expected to inform the required changes in IRC codes, Ministry's
specifications.

1.4.5 The Committee was expected to suggest technology/ materials with the following four
things in mind viz. a) Cost Savings b) Time Savings c) Durability and d) Aesthetics

1.5 Meetings of the Committee:

The Committee held its meetings on 7th July,2015 (New Delhi), 18th July,2015 (Mumbai),
21st August,2015 (New Delhi), 10th and 11th September,2015 (Mumbai), 24th
September,2015 (Mumbai), 6th October,2015 (Mumbai), 20th October,2015 (Mumbai), 6th
November,2015 (Bangalore), 2nd and 3rdDecember,2015 (Mumbai) and 15th and 16th
December,2015 (Mumbai), 13th and 14th January,2016 (New Delhi) and 29th January,2016
(Mumbai). There were many interchanges between the committee members thereafter by e
mails for finalizing the report.

1.6 Address by the Hon. Union Minister:

The Committee was addressed by the Hon. Union Minister Road Transport and Highways in
its first meeting in New Delhi on 7th July,2015, as well as by Dr. R.C. Sinha, Advisor to the
Hon. Union Minister in its third meeting at New Delhi on 21st August,2015. In both these
meetings the purpose and importance of the work of the Committee was stressed by the
dignitaries addressing the Committee.
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1.7 Invitees to the Committee's Meetings:

The Committee invited expert members and senior officials to attend its meetings and
participate in its deliberations in furtherance of its terms of reference. Shri. S.N. Das, DG (RD)
& Special Secretary to GOI, Shri. Anand Kumar, Managing Director, National Highway
Infrastructure Development Corporation Ltd. and Shri. P.L. Bongirwar, Former Principal
Secretary, Maharashtra PWD attended a majority of the Committee's meetings and
contributed towards its work. The Committee also invited Dr. L.R. Kadiyali and Shri. R.K. Jain,
Former Chief Engineer, Haryana PWD; both experts on concrete roads and Shri. R.M.
Vidwans, noted tunnel expert to participate in its deliberations. Shri. S.S. Momin, Former
Secretary, PWD-GOM, and Mr. D.G. Diwate (Former Chief Engineer, Konkan Railways and
currently Advisor, Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Ltd.), Dr. V.V. Nori, and Shri S. G. Joglekar,
well-known experts in the field of bridges, also attended the Committee's meetings. The
participants in the initial few meetings of the Committee viz. Dr. L.R. Kadiyali, Shri. P.L.
Bongirwar and Shri. R.M. Vidwans subsequently became members of the Committee under
the memoranda issued by the Ministry (Annexure 1.2 and 1.3). All these members made a
significant contribution to the work of the Committee from time to time.

1.8 Presentations of Innovative Technology Options:

In furtherance of its terms of reference, the Committee requested experts and proponents
of various innovative technologies, equipment manufacturers etc. to throw light on the uses
of their technologies/ equipment etc. in the construction of highways. The Committee also
held discussions with representatives of some developers and contractors with a view to
appreciate their perspectives on these issues. These interactions were useful in formulation
of the Committee's recommendations.

1.9 Proceedings:

The proceedings of the Committee's meetings are attached to this report as Annexure 1.4.

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2. MEASURES FOR PROMOTION OF INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES
2.1 National Highway Development Project:

Highway infrastructure development gained momentum when the construction of golden


quadrilateral and East-West/ North South links was launched with further impetus provided
by successive plans keeping their focus on a massive development of the National Highways.
As mentioned in the previous chapter, this entails demand for rapid implementation of
projects to achieve the targets set. It is obvious that speedy construction necessitates
deployment of more innovative and modern methods of construction which facilitate
adherence to the timelines and enable construction of high quality and durable roads
matching international standards.

2.2 Review of Current Procurement and Implementation Regime:

2.2.1 It is clear that there has to be a continuous improvement in the methods of construction.
New technologies have to be engaged; new materials and new equipment have to be
deployed in the construction of highways for speedy implementation of projects. These
enable achievement of the objectives of economy, speed, quality of construction and
durability over the service life of the projects. The regime of procurement and
implementation of projects needs to be conducive to the deployment of new
technologies, materials and equipment to meet the objectives as above. The
Committee deliberated about whether the current regime of procurement and
implementation of highway projects allows scope for use of innovative
technologies/materials and equipment; and more specifically to address the
requirements of the massive national highway development program on hand. The
outcome of such a review is covered in the following paragraphs.

2.2.2 The Public Private Partnership (PPP) model embodying private investment in the road
sector addresses the wide gap between the requirement of funds for the massive
high a de elop e t p oje t a d the Go e e t s li ited udgeta esou es. The
PPP approach also helps harness the expertise and efficiency of the private sector.
Three different modes are deployed to implement projects through the PPP model as
follows:

I) Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer i.e. DBFOT (Toll) Mode: This
involves a private entity (the Concessionaire) to build the road through his finances
(equity and debt), and maintain and operate the same until the end of the

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concession period. The concessionaire is entitled to collect the prescribed user fee
(Toll) during the operations period. Toll commencement immediately following the
construction provides an incentive for early completion of the project.
II) DBFOT (Annuity) Mode: This requires the concessionaire to construct the
highway and operate and maintain the same during the operations period. The
concessionaire is entitled to the payment of fixed annual/ semi-annual payments
(annuities) during the operations period following the construction. While the
concessionaire does not take the traffic risks, Governmental authorities have the
liberty to collect toll on the project highways.

III) DBFOT (Hybrid Annuity) Mode: This approach helps reduce risks for the
concessionaire and 40% of the project cost is payable in the construction period in
installments based on project progress. The Concessionaire is entitled to annuity
payments in operations period following the construction. The concessionaire is
also entitled to receive O&M payments till the end of the concession. As in the
previous mode, the concessionaire does not take the traffic risks and Governmental
authorities have the liberty to collect toll on the project highways. This model also
allows price variation to be paid during construction as well as operation and
maintenance period. Further, an interest bearing mobilization advance is also
provided for. Thus, under this model, Government takes away from the contractor a
substantial proportion of the construction risk.

2.2.3 To facilitate project implementation, a Model Concession agreement was evolved.


Subsequently an associated framework comprising Manuals of Two Lane, Four Lane and
Six Lane Highways was evolved as overarching specifications/ design requirements for
the corresponding projects. These are now used quite extensively across the entire
country in the national highways (and state road projects based on PPP). All the above
DBFOT modes allocate the construction risk to the concessionaire. The concessionaire is
expected to conform to the minimum obligatory provisions under the schedules in the
concession agreement, (which in turn generally make reference to the appropriate
Manual). It is to be noted that the concessionaire has the liberty to design the Project
Highway within the limits set by these provisions.

2.2.4 For projects not based on concessions as above, the Model Agreement through the EPC
(Engineering, Procurement and Construction) mode of implementation, embodying
turnkey construction (and maintenance for a limited period after construction) by the
Contractor against a lumpsum price payable to him has been evolved. This also follows
the regime of the Contractor carrying out the designs of the Project Highway within the
limits of parameters set forth in the Schedules of the Model Agreement and the
corresponding Manual of Four/ Six Lanes.

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2.2.5 The Committee was of the unanimous view that there was a need for promoting the use
of new technologies and materials/equipment used in the construction works across the
globe in national highway projects, which would enhance quality as well as speed of
construction while effecting economy of scale and costs. The Committee was also
conscious of the fact that the framework in the model documentation was founded on
the principle of allowing the Contractor the complete liberty to design the projects;
within the limits set forth in the manuals/specifications. The Committee also noted that
the developer will adopt the new technology if it gives monetary advantage directly or
in indirect way which should not be considered objectionable. With the experience
gained, the new technology has the potential to become part of future projects and
would lead to cost reduction, thereby providing benefit to Government

2.2.6 The major issue that came for the consideration of the Committee was whether the
above regime purporting to provide full freedom of design to the contractors/
concessionaires albeit within the limits of obligatory project specific provisions, does so;
and whether the regime allows realization of the Government's intention of allowing
innovative technologies and use of alternative materials in the various projects. The
Committee had also to identify gaps if any herein and address them in the Committee's
recommendations. The Committee's interaction with representatives of some of the
concessionaire companies suggested that there was indeed scope for improvement in
this respect. The Committee felt the need to address some issues that disallowed the
intended liberty to the concessionaires/ contractors and came in the way of promoting
the use of new technologies and materials in construction works of national highways
although such liberty is, in fact, enshrined in the Model Agreements. The Committee's
work on this aspect has been covered in the following paragraphs.

2.2.7 The committee feels that there is need for the Government to declare firmly the
objective and spirit of the DBFOT and EPC contracts viz: the principle of allowing the
Contractor/ Concessionaire the complete liberty to design the projects, within the
limits set forth in the manuals/specifications. It must be made clear that the drawings
accompanying the tender documents are only indicative and the
contractor/concessionaire is free to design the project components any way it likes, so
long as the design meets the parameters prescribed in the tender documents and that
there is no question of asking for a rebate or paying extra due to different design.

2.2.8 The following paragraphs in the Manuals for Four Laning and Six Laning stipulate the
following requirement towards use of alternative technologies and materials.

(Paragraph 1.9 of the Manual): This Manual generally provides for design and
construction as per Codes, Standards, Specifications, Guidelines, etc. as
published by IRC, MORTH and BIS for road and bridge works. Where the
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Concessionaire intends to use an alternative to these Standards, Guidelines for
delivering an equal or better product, he shall be permitted to use such
alternative subject to the following conditions:
i) He shall demonstrate that the proposed alternative conforms to any of the
following International Standards, Codes of Practice, Specifications, Guidelines,
etc.
a) IRC revised codes or new codes or amendments to existing codes which are
effective after the date of calling bid
b) American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials
(AASHTO)
c) American Society for Testing of Materials (ASTM)
d) Euro Codes
e) National Standards of any of the following countries·
United States of America (USA), Canada, United Kingdom (UK), France,
Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Netherlands, Spain, Australia, New
Zealand, Japan and South Africa.

ii) In case the Concessionaire intends to use any alternative material


technology/method, whether patented or otherwise, that is not specifically covered
in the Indian or International Standards as listed above, but the use of which has
been permitted on similar projects (similar in category of road, traffic and climatic
conditions) as the Project Highway, he would be permitted its use on certification by
the owners of such similar projects regarding the continued successful performance
of such materials, technologies, methods, procedures or processes for at-least 5
years of the service life of the project. Such a certification shall be supported with
details of critical performance parameters.

(Paragraph 1.11 of the Manual): Alternative Standards and Specifications

Where alternative standards and specifications are intended to be used in


accordance with Para 1.9, all such proposals shall be submitted by the
Concessionaire to the Independent Engineer together with certification and details
mentioned in Para 1.9. In case, the Independent Engineer is of the opinion that the
proposal submitted by the Concessionaire is not in conformity with any of the
International Standards or Codes or evidence by successful performance, then he will
record his reasons and convey the same to the Concessionaire for compliance. A
record shall be kept by the Independent Engineer, of non-compliance, if any, by the
Concessionaire. Adverse consequences, if any arising from adoption of any such
alternative proposals shall be treated as "Concessionaire Default" and shall be dealt
in accordance with the provisions of the Concession Agreement.

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2.2.9 The Committee Interacted with representatives of some concessionaires on this issue,
especially on the implementation of the above clause in the national highway projects,
and the following issues emerged.
i) The clause requires that the te h olog should ha e ee used o similar
projects (similar in category of road, traffic and climatic conditions)”. This appears to
lead to a chicken or egg syndrome. U less it is t ied su essfull o a si ila [ ead
atio al high a ] ith si ila [ ead sa e ] t affi et ., it ill ot e allo ed.
Then when is it to get an opportunity to be used on a National Highway project even
for the first time?

ii) The adoption of alternative technologies/ materials for use in the specific project
highway is subject to approval by the Independent Engineer/ Authority's Engineer.
However, for various reasons, the Independent Engineers, by and large, appear to
be reluctant to approve such proposals. The Committee was informed of cases
where an identical proposal met with approval from the Independent Engineer in
one project and was turned down in another project by another Independent
Engineer.

iii) The onus of proving that the technology has been used in similar circumstances
on another project for five years as cast upon the Contractors/ Concessionaires was
a difficult hurdle to surmount and more often than not, the proposals are turned
down; defeating the core principle of DBFOT.

2.2.10 The Authorities in NHAI or the Ministry were reported to take the stand that they do not
have any role in the Concession Agreements to overrule the decisions of the
Independent Engineers, in the current regime and advise to follow the course of dispute
resolution mechanism enshrined in the Agreements for resolution of such issues. As a
result, the Concessionaires and Contractors prefer to follow the usual technologies
rather than take up the dilatory dispute resolution routes.

2.2.11 There were cases where the drawings accompanying the contract documents provided
details of cross sections e.g. levels, thicknesses of pavement layers etc. and although the
alternative pavement designs are permissible as per the relevant IRC Codes (IRC 37), the
Independent Engineers insisted that the levels and thicknesses as shown in the drawings
were obligatory thus negating the freedom for resorting to alternative designs.

2.2.12 In most cases where the Independent Engineers expressed readiness to approve such
proposals, this was accompanied with the rider that the contractors/ concessionaires
share savings resulting from use of such technologies with the Authorities quite in
contravention of the spirit of the clause cited above.

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2.3 Measures towards Enhancing Innovative Technologies on a Continual Basis:

2.3.1 The Committee deliberated on the above issues. The Committee found a discussion with
Shri. V.L. Patankar, former Member of the NHAI and currently Director, Indian Academy
of Highway Engineers (who headed a Committee on the use of alternative technologies)
very useful towards framing of the Committee's recommendations on this subject.

2.3.2 The Committee became conscious of the fact that the reluctance by Independent
Engineer as well as officials in charge in the authority to approve the alternative
technologies sprang from a lack of appreciation of the spirit of the implementation
regime and apprehensions about such approvals being called in question at some later
point in time. The Committee felt the need of a mechanism of facilitating approvals for
use of these technologies in the light of this. The Committee came up unanimously with
the suggestion covered in the following paragraph.

2.4 Declaration of Intent

2.4.1 The committee feels that there is need for the Government to declare firmly the
objective and spirit of the DBFOT and EPC contracts viz: the principle of allowing the
Contractor the complete liberty to design the projects, within the limits set forth in the
concession agreements/ contracts/manuals/specifications. It must be made clear that
the drawings accompanying the tender documents are only indicative and the
contractor/concessionaire is free to design the project components any way it likes, so
long as the design meets the parameters prescribed in the tender documents and that
there is no question of asking for a rebate or paying extra for the alternative designs
conforming to the requirements.

2.4.2 Importation of successful new technologies from abroad must be made easy. The Indian
Engineers and entrepreneurs are quite capable of employing the best technologies of
the world. If given a free hand, they can be on par with the best in the world. It is also to
be noted that concessionaires/ contractors would find the price of new technologies
and equipment affordable, given the large size of national highway project concessions/
contracts.

2.5 Constitution of a Standing Panel of Experts:

2.5.1 The Committee realized that in order to implement the true spirit of the above clause
embodying the intent of providing freedom to adopt innovative technologies and
materials in highway projects, an institutional set up for according expeditious
approvals to the proposals from contractors/concessionaires towards deployment of
innovative technologies/ materials/equipment needs to be in place. The Committee
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deliberated about such a set up and felt that the system has to answer the following
requirements

 It has to result in swift decision making.


 It should involve collective decision
 It should embody adequate expertise in the matter including inputs from
experts from outside the Governmental set up.
 It should exist on a continual basis.

2.5.2 The Committee felt that a standing Panel of Experts needs be constituted at the national
level to facilitate expeditious approvals to the proposals of using innovative
technologies/materials etc. The concessionaires or contractors, who seek approval of
alternative technologies or materials from the Independent Engineer / Authority's
Engineer (as the case may be) and meet with disapproval or where the response is not
provided in a definite time frame, should have the liberty to take these matters with
this Panel of Experts. The Panel of Experts would be expected to examine such
proposals and give their approval/ refuse approval within a definite time frame (e.g. one
month). The Panel of Experts could hear the contractor/concessionaire and give their
decision in the matter in a definite time frame as above. The arrangement of such a
Panel of Experts would, in the opinion of this Committee, provide for a method of
collective decision at the national level and help achieve expeditious approvals and
promote the use of appropriate technologies/ alternative materials.

2.5.3 The composition and functions of such a Panel of Experts was also deliberated by the
Committee. The Committee's recommendations are as follows.

2.5.4 The chairman of the Panel of Experts should be a reputed professional with proven
experience/background in construction and designs of highways. Out of the other
members one member of the Panel of Experts could be an expert in Highway
Engineering / Pavement Technology, another could be drawn from the field of structural
/ bridge engineering and the member secretary should be drawn from the Government
e.g. Chief Engineer of the MORTH/ NHAI.

2.5.5 The Panel of Experts should meet frequently preferably once a month to deliberate on
the matters referred to it.

2.5.6 The Panel of Experts should have the power to decide on the matter referred to it by the
I depe de t E gi ee / Co essio ai e o Autho it s E gi ee / o t a to i EPC
contracts) as regards the dispute if any, arising out of the decision of the Independent

17
Engineer in the implementation of innovative technologies, materials, equipment in
accordance with the above clause.

2.5.7 The Concessionaire/ Contractor who wishes to adopt a new, innovative technology in
accordance with the above clause should have the liberty to refer the matter to this
Panel of Experts with adequate details e.g. specifications, applicable codes/ guidelines,
laboratory results, field experience, literature on the matter etc. The concessionaire
should have the liberty to make a presentation to the Panel of Experts. The committee
should hear the Independent Engineer also.

2.5.8 The Panel of Experts should have the liberty to seek advice from other experts (e.g.
tunnels etc.) as may be required. The expenses towards such expert advice should be
borne from funds made available to the Panel of Experts and the Chairman should have
the freedom to approve and incur these expenses. The expenses of additional tests etc.
could be borne by the concessionaires/ contractors.

2.5.9 Being in the realm of highly technical matters, the Panel of Experts should enjoy the
status and immunity of a panel of arbitrators as per the Arbitration and Conciliation Act.
This arrangement would enable the Panel of Experts to take decisions swiftly and purely
conforming to its professional mandate.

2.5.10 The Panel of Experts would have the power to decide disputes relating to the technical
matters (including interpretation of code, design procedure etc.) pertaining to the
operation and implementation of the above clause. The decision of the Panel of Experts
should be binding on all the parties.

2.5.11 The Committee wishes to reiterate the importance of speedy decision making and
recommends that the Panel of Experts should provide their decision within a definite
time frame (e.g. one month) from the time the matter is referred to them. The time
could be extended suitably only in exceptional cases.

2.5.12 The Panel of Experts should also provide guidance to the authorities in the approvals
and implementation of the research schemes of the Government.

2.5.13 Besides according approvals to the proposals of innovative technologies/ materials


(under Clause 1.9 of the Manual as referred in the Paragraph above), the Panel of
Experts as above should also be entrusted to examine various alternative technologies
when individual proposals from proponents of technology/ alternative materials/
equipment are placed before them. The Panel of Experts should be empowered to
approve the technologies/materials to be used either on trial stretches in appropriate
cases or approve them for use in construction of highways solely based on their
18
assessment. The technologies/ alternative materials approved by the Panel of Experts
for use in construction of highways should be permissible.

19
3. IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES
3.1 Institutional Set Up

3.1.1 The Committee took up review of overall institutional set up of the implementation of
projects involving construction of national highways with a view to suggest
improvements to enable speedy construction of highways that match international
standards of quality, aesthetics and durability while effecting reduction of costs. The
project implementation set up both at the national level and at the state level (for state
projects) generally involves administrative machinery at the Governmental level e.g.
officials of the National Highway Authority, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways
and authorities within the state governments or state owned companies (e.g. road
corporations etc.). The other elements of the set up include consultants deployed for
the project development or implementation and the contractors or concessionaires.
The Indian Roads Congress is the apex body administering the issuance of guidelines and
codes that govern construction works in the highways sector. The Committee reviewed
the working of this set up to make some recommendations that aim at identifying
opportunities of improvements.

3.2 Government Officials in Charge of Implementation

3.2.1 The Committee acknowledges that a key role is played by the officials who are entrusted
with the task of implementation of various projects. The approach of these officials
towards project implementation has the potential to impact the project implementation
favourably or adversely. Project implementation would involve monitoring and decision
making at every stage of project. A lackadaisical approach in this respect would work
against a project and the need for the project implementation officials to lead the
projects from the front cannot be emphasized enough.

3.2.2 It is necessary that project implementation is decentralized to the extent possible so


that matters do not get prolonged in a to and fro movement of correspondence
between project officials on the field and those in the headquarters. The Committee
feels that a well thought out system based on decentralization of powers and
responsibilities backed up by monitoring from the headquarters to verify and remove
bottlenecks in the project implementation would be in order.

3.2.3 One of the chief reasons why project decisions get delayed is the fear in the minds of
officials about being hounded even for bona fide decisions. The Committee wishes to
point out that decisions are generally judged o g o a hi dsight a d sometimes

20
questioned without distinguishing between genuine or bona fide and mala fide acts.
Genuine or bona fide decisions should not result in penal actions as they tend to create
and perpetuate a system based on inaction or aversion to speedy decisions. The
Committee recommends appropriate amendments to vigilance procedures so that
officials taking swift decisions in the bona fide interest of the project are protected. This
will benefit project implementation immensely.

3.2.4 The Committee also recommends that performance assessment of the officials in charge
of implementation should be carried out by, among other things, their result orientation,
in terms of the achievement of the targets set. The system should acknowledge officers
who perform towards realization of project targets in the timelines set with a view to
facilitate the larger objective of expeditious implementation of highway projects. The
Committee suggests that a system of awards to acknowledge outstanding performances
may also be considered.

3.2.5 A systematic periodical monitoring/ reviews at the higher levels within the
governmental authorities to identify and resolve issues that plague project
implementation would help enhance speed of implementation. These reviews should
set apart projects severely lagging behind their targets and appropriate measures taken
to remove bottlenecks and to expedite them.

3.2.6 The Committee was also informed of instances, albeit rare, of arrests and penal actions
across the board against everyone (even those very remotely connected with the actual
works/cause of collapse) after cases of collapse of some structures. The Committee felt
that the fear of such actions will result in perpetuating a tendency to play safe and shun
innovations. The Committee is also conscious that penal actions will necessarily have to
be taken for negligence where it exists regarding professional conduct in such cases.
The Committee feels that actions need to be taken only after a thorough enquiry by
independent experts to determine causes of the collapse. The Committee took a
considered view of the matter and felt that readiness to adopt innovative designs and
methods in construction in the country will receive a great setback if actions are taken
without such an inquiry. The Committee, therefore, recommends that in case of a
collapse of a structure either during construction or later on, before taking any penal
action like arrests, there should be an inquiry through a technical committee of
independent experts, to determine the probable cause of the collapse to determine the
responsibility

3.3 Consultants

3.3.1 The Committee realized that all the stages of the project life cycle viz. Project
preparation, implementation and the operation rely heavily on consultants who are
21
engaged at the various stages. The Committee found that the selection of consultants
has an important bearing on the overall outcomes in a project in terms of its quality,
durability, and aesthetics and in its cost. The Committee, therefore, decided to
deliberate the matter in detail. The Committee also heard the viewpoints of some
consultants on this matter to arrive at the recommendations made herein.

3.3.2 The Committee clearly feels that the current approach in the least cost method of
selection of consultants has to be changed in favour of Quality and Cost Based Selection
(QCBS). The weightage for the technical score of the consultants should be 80 or more.
Consultants scoring less than 75 marks (out of 100) in terms of technical score should
not be considered for further evaluation. These arrangements generally in tune with the
World Bank and ADB guidelines would help select a more suitable consultant (as
opposed to the least cost method of selection of consultants). In exceptional cases
where the projects demand a high level of innovation, the Quality Based Selection (QBS)
may also be resorted to.

3.3.3 There should be a framework for systematic assessment of performance of consultants


on projects and their track record in previous assignments should be kept in view in
evaluation of his consultancy proposal.

3.3.4 One important concern of the Committee is that there is no single governing body that
has the mandate to regulate the engineering profession despite the fact that there are
very large numbers of engineers working at various levels in highways and other
p oje ts i the uilt e i o e t i o t a to / o essio ai e s o ga izatio s,
consultancy organizations and individual consultants. A Governing body or Engineering
Council should be formed to have the statutory authority to lay down regulations
concerning professional ethics and conduct, and to conduct programs of CPD
(Continuous Professional Development) so that their capability to take competent, fair
and sound engineering judgements is enhanced and they are well prepared to face the
challenges of the technical environment of today and in the coming years. As a matter
of fact, an effective legislation for Professional Engineers is a pre- e uisite to Best
P a ti es ei g i t odu ed i the High a “e to .

3.3.5 The Committee was informed that there is currently no system of a licensing regime for
professional engineers as in other countries. It was also learnt by the Committee that
the Gujarat Government has enacted the Guja at P ofessio al Ci il E gi ee s A t i
2006 which sets up an apex engineering council for the licensing of engineers with
appropriate qualifications and allowing only such licensed engineers to provide
professional services in the built environment. A system to revoke such licenses for
incidents of professional misconduct has also been set up under this act. The Committee
22
recommends that a suitably drafted legislation needs to be put into place at the national
level so as to govern the professional services of all engineers working in the highways
sector in particular and the built environment in general. Such a step would also place
the engineering profession at par with other professions e.g. lawyers, doctors, architects
et . i legal te s . The Co ittee as also i fo ed that a E gi ee s Bill that ould
set up such an Engineering Council for achieving these objectives was being considered
by the Government. The Committee recommends that the Engineers Bill needs to be
given due importance, and the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways may take up
the matter with the Ministry of Human Resources for further action in this regard.

3.3.6 Discussions and presentation to the Committee by some consultants revealed that the
present methodology of procurement of consultancy services needs some
improvements. Based on these discussions and presentations the Committee makes the
recommendations covered in the following paragraph.

3.4 Recommendations towards Consultancy Procurement

1. Current procurement envisages an integrity pact to be signed by the consultant. This


is a welcome measure in the eyes of the Committee. However, a violation of the pact
on the part of the consultant is held against it entailing penal measures including
blacklisting/debarment etc. Consultants have suggested that a penal action (including
criminal proceedings) against the defaulting official(s) of the consultant would be in
order and not an action against the consultant. This may be considered.

2. The current eligibility criterion involves annual turnover from consultancy


assignments in the past. Consultants have pointed out that the format seeking
information on this aspect (rather incorrectly) requires annual revenues to be certified.
Consultants have suggested that a certificate by the statutory auditor about annual
turnovers of the respective years flowing from consultancy assignments should
feature in this format. This may be considered.

3. Consultants have pointed out that the CVs are provided for the various positions in
the consultancy assignment. The current procedure stipulates that in case of
false/incorrect information supplied in the CV, the consultant is liable to be debarred.
Consultants have suggested that penal actions should be taken against individual
officials rather than the consultants. The Committee recommends that this aspect be
considered.

4. Qualifi atio de a ded fo the Tea Leade s positio o te plates his ha i g


o ked o a tea leade s position in a previous assignment. How would a person get
23
his first assignment of the team leader in view of such a requirement? Consultants
have suggested that adequate experience in a Deput Tea Leade s positio should
also be stipulated. This is worthy of being considered.

5. Qualifications stipulated for various positions do not include diplomas in civil


engineering. Supervision at the lower levels can usefully employ a large number of
experienced diploma holder civil engineers. Diploma holder civil engineers, of course,
with suitable experience should also be allowed. This is necessary in view of the very
large number of works that is expected in near future.

6. The consultancy assignment demands experience of six/ eight laning for such projects.
Since there have not been many projects of this type, adequate experience of
two/four/six laning may also be allowed.

7. Experience certificates from the projects have to be produced. It is regarded that this
takes long. Consultants have suggested that the officials should be allowed to certify
their experience with the rider that cases of experience found to be fake/incorrect,
would entail penal action against the individuals. The Committee finds this worthy of
consideration.

8. Experience of construction supervision is usually demanded from individuals for the


various positions. Experience of construction should also be considered admissible in
addition to that of construction supervision.

9. RFPs usually ask for experience in developed countries. This could be made applicable
to the top few (one or two) of technical personnel only. Experience in developing
countries should be admissible for the remaining members of the team.

10. Sometimes individual positions which are not required for projects are stipulated, e.g.
two-three financial analysts for EPC projects when one is enough etc. This anomaly
needs to be corrected.

11. The newly introduced provision of Infracon website where CVs of individual officials
are uploaded is a welcome measure. However, a person who has experience in
multiple assignments e.g. highway engineer or bridge engineer should be allowed to
upload his CV for multiple positions based on experience.

3.5 Indian Roads Congress

3.5.1 The Indian Roads Congress is the apex body that deals with the publications of codes
and guidelines. The Committee makes the following recommendations in respect of the
24
working of this body so that the codes and guidelines keep pace with the developments
in other countries.

3.5.2 The Committee noted that IRC codes are being made on voluntary basis which
takes considerable time and no accountability can be fixed. In most advanced countries
drafting of portions of each code are assigned to experienced consultants and
academicians on payment basis. The Committee recommends adoption of similar
procedure in India, and suggests the following:

i. The drafting of codes/ explanatory handbooks etc. should be entrusted


to expert consultants/ academicians on payment basis.

ii. The expenses incurred by outside expert members towards


participation in code committee meetings as well as other experts
called as invitee should be borne by the Indian Roads Congress and
paid/ reimbursed promptly. Adequate funds should be made available
for such expenses and the conveners of the respective committees
should be fully authorized to approve these expenses.

iii. The Ministry should make a separate dedicated fund available to IRC to
meet the above requirements.

3.5.3 The Committee feels that a system to review the experiences in project implementation,
new developments in technology, materials and equipment etc. and amend the manuals
for highways (two, four and six laning) incorporating such experiences suitably should be
introduced at a frequency of at least once in two years. A committee comprising officials
from the Ministry, representatives of the concession companies and the IRC should be
constituted to carry out such reviews and amend the manuals on a continual basis.

3.5.4 The publications of the Indian Roads Congress are not available online as of now, unlike
publications of similar bodies in advanced countries or the publications of BIS in our
country. The Committee suggests that these publications may be available for
downloading from the website of IRC on payment of suitable charges.

3.6 Pre- Construction Activities and Permits

3.6.1 Environment and Forest Clearances: The Committee noted that the processes of
environmental clearance and forest clearance to projects are long drawn and cause
significant delay in commencement of projects. It can be seen that such clearances are
ultimately issued (and very rarely rejected) only after a considerable delay and in the
hindsight, such delays could be regarded as avoidable. A mechanism needs to be in
25
place to ensure that these clearances are accorded on priority since delays in such
clearances impacts costs and prevent realization of the economic benefits of the project.

3.6.2 Cutting of Trees: The Committee arrived at the need to have well defined policy for tree
cutting in the ROW for the construction of the project so as to avoid delays in getting
permissions for cutting, transplantation and to fix the compensation. The Committee
noted that for urban area the local authority could be entrusted with the job of
plantation of new trees against those to be cut, if any. The authority could pay the
compensation to the local body towards this. The amendment to the state support
agreement to incorporate this provision would help avoid delays on this account in
urban areas. For the non-urban sections, the new plantation (equal to the trees that are
proposed to be cut) should be carried out by the Concessionaire/ Contractor. In the
forest areas the plantation of new trees should be carried out by the forest department
and the authority could provide compensation to the forest department. In all the above
cases, the cutting and transplantation of trees should be done by the concessionaire/
contractor, who should be allowed to keep the proceeds of the trees cut towards costs
of cutting of trees.

3.6.3 Costs of Utility Shifting, LA etc.: The costs of utility shifting, tree cutting, land acquisition,
etc. are borne by the authority. Adequate provisions for these items be made and funds
placed at the disposal of the field units. The field project officials (e.g. CGM /PD) should
be fully authorized for release of funds to the concessionaire/ contractor after due
scrutiny. This would obviate the delays currently faced with such proposals being
handled by headquarters, as pointed out to the Committee.

3.6.4 Quarry Permits: Currently getting quarry permits for crushing of aggregates and for
borrow area takes very long (between 9 months to 2 years). The Committee felt that
there was a need to simply the present procedure.

3.6.5 Gram Panchayat Permissions: At present, a No Objection Certificate from Gram


Panchayats is required for borrow areas and also for acquiring additional right of way to
accommodate widening. This is a time consuming process. The Committee feels that
when the project of strengthening / widening the road is sanctioned at the GOI level,
permission from the Gram Panchayat may not be deemed necessary. Further, no
objection certificate of the Gram Panchayat is required for installation of crushers, RMC
etc. The Committee feels that when the procedure stipulates permission from pollution
control board and compliance of the environmental stipulations, NOC from the Gram
Panchayat may not be considered necessary.

3.6.6 Transfer of Government Lands: The Committee was informed that several projects
have been delayed for want of Government land. The Committee suggests change in
26
the present business rules. The Committee recommends that a high-power committee
under Chairmanship of retired Chief Secretary of the state or a retired High Court Judge
be constituted at the state level. The committee should be equipped with powers to
hear the parties, i.e., authority constructing the roads and the government department
in control of the land. Based on needs of both organizations and noting the viewpoints
presented by affected department the committee can pass suitable orders which will be
binding on both parties about expeditious transfer of government lands for the project,
so that the project progress is not hampered. The matter of compensation should be
separately decided by the Committee later and not linked to the process of transfer of
the government land.

3.7 Construction/ Completion Issues

3.7.1 The Committee was informed that well water is not allowed for use during construction
of highways, and only river water is allowed to be used. This involves longer haulage
resulting in significant fuel consumption. Further, during summer months, sometimes
there is a ban imposed by the district administration on using river water for any other
purpose except drinking water. Since concession agreements/ contracts mandate rain
water harvesting in construction of national highways thereby charging the groundwater,
the policy of not allowing well water needs review since it entails slowdown or stoppage
of construction activities in the summer months and high diesel consumption

3.7.2 The Committee came across many instances where the local citizens demand additional
facilities e.g. parking beyond the ROW, improvement of connecting approaches,
additional flyovers, subways etc. Such demands cause protests and interruptions to the
construction work or stoppage of traffic in case of roads under operation. These are
cases of change of scope and need to be resolved speedily.

3.7.3 The Committee suggests that the safety fund (0.25%) in respect of projects could be
used for addressing items such as a creating parking area within ROW for local needs;
developing Government land beyond ROW for parking/accommodating grades; parking
lots for vehicles coming to local factories; improving the grades of joining roads etc.
Funds could be placed with the field officers of the Authority (e.g. CGM, PD etc.) who
would accord financial sanction from these funds to demands put up by local
officers/public representatives. The Committee suggests that enhancement of this
component (currently at 0.25% of the project cost) substantially, say 2% may also be
considered to accommodate such local needs.

3.7.4 The approval to Commercial Operations Date (COD) is provided in the current regime by
the Independent Engineer. Any delay in COD approval causes a severe financial burden
on the Concessionaire. The Committee feels that unless safety and reliability issues are
27
involved, withholding of COD by the Independent Engineer should be disallowed. COD
need not be withheld for issues such as compliance of conditions etc. for which a bank
guarantee of an appropriate value for timely compliance of conditions could be
obtained from the concessionaire and the COD approved. The matter of compensation if
any could be settled in due course. Withholding of COD for significant time results in
severe financial consequences includi g o essio ai e s i a ilit to se i e his p oje t
debts. Besides projects becoming NPAs for the lenders, such instances are certainly not
conducive to attracting foreign investors.

3.7.5 The Co ittee s i te a tio ith so e o essio o pa ies a d o t actors revealed


issues that need to be addressed through issue of appropriate circulars and
amendments to the manuals. Based on these discussions and presentations, the
Committee makes the recommendations covered in the following paragraph.

3.8 Recommendations towards Improvements in Implementation of the Projects

1. During interaction with the Committee, representatives of Concession companies


have pointed out that the appointment of the Independent Engineer gets delayed
considerably in most projects. The Committee recommends that the independent
Engineer should be appointed early in the development period so that he is useful
in the preparatory and design stage of the project. The Committee recommends
that the appointment of Independent Engineer could also be made a Condition
Precedent.

2. Representatives also pointed out that various structures in the highway projects
can be in designed and detailed in several different ways / arrangements.
Normally the concessionaire is expected to adopt a design that has regard to the
site conditions, available plant, expertise, skilled manpower, time constraint etc.
given the freedom to design in the DBFOT/EPC models. The concessionaire/
contractor is also obligated to comply with the mandatory features of design/
specifications. The review of the Independent Engineer is expected therefore to be
in the light of this rationale. The type of structure, construction method etc.
should generally be as per the choice and capability of the concessionaire. These
representatives suggested that If a particular feature or type of structure is
desired by owner, the same shall be clearly spelt out in the Schedule B of the
Concession Agreement (CA)/ EPC contract. Further, DPRs for the projects
generally suggests some details of the structures. In the spirit of the DBFOT, the
Concessionaire is expected to be allowed to adopt a different detail/ arrangement,
without compromising the basic functional requirements spelt out in CA. However,
sometimes it is seen that DPR requirements are insisted upon and rebate is
28
effected, if an alternative is contemplated. For example, if Schedule-B mentions
girder-bridge, and the concessionaire proposes a box structure, rebate is
demanded for the saving in quantities in the structure as well as approaches.
Similarly, if pile foundation is mentioned in schedule B and the concessionaire is
able to design with open foundation, this not allowed some times. It was pointed
out that sometimes the IE / NHAI insist on maintaining the road levels given in the
DPR, even if CA does not stipulate any such provision. In case of structures e.g.
flyovers, this type of insistence results in virtually compelling to provide the
structural arrangement to the depth shown in DPR with minimum clearance under
the structure and the FRL becoming mandatory. This is not in keeping with the
spirit of DBFOT. The Committee deliberated the matter and generally agreed with
these suggestions. The Committee felt that having due regard to the freedom
allowed to the Concessionaire/Contractor in the DBFOT/EPC contracts, the
Schedule B should mention clearly the mandatory scope allowing the
concessionaire/contractor to design the project in accordance with these
mandatory requirements.
3. It could be seen from the interaction with representatives of concession/
contracting companies, that there is a lack of clarity about the exact manner in
which DBFOT/EPC agreements are to be interpreted towards freedom allowed to
the individual concessionaires/contractors. To avoid multiple interpretations at
variance with each other, it would be suitable if the Government issues a circular
clarifying the rational of the DBFOT/EPC to enable all appreciate the underlying
philosophy of DBFOT/EPC in this regard. This would facilitate uniform
interpretation on this aspect in the field.

4. Concessionaires pointed out that steel railings are stipulated on the footpaths.
These are prone to thefts and a suggestion was made that
concessionaires/contractors should be allowed to use concrete for railings since
these have to be maintained during the operations period. Even in case of EPC
projects authority might find concrete railings suitable in view of this. The
Committee recommends this suggestion for consideration.

5. It was pointed out to the Committee that present guideline for fixing the Finished
Road Level (FRL) is with respect to HFL/water table. In absence of any data on
HFL/ Water table, it is often compelled to adopt ground level as HFL. It was
suggested that HFL always refers to water bodies, streams, rivers etc. only and
cannot be applicable beyond the flood zone. For stretches beyond the flood zones,
the subgrade top could be kept sufficiently above (say 0.6 m) above the ground
level. The Committee finds the suggestion worthy of consideration.

29
6. It was also pointed out that load tests of superstructure of one span, exceeding
15m, for all new structures is obligatory as per the terms of CA. It was suggested
that load test could be made mandatory only for unusual structural arrangements
or where any doubt exists about quality of construction or any other problem is
apprehended. The Committee found this suggestion also acceptable, since it will
bring about considerable economy on national scale.

7. Clause 20.1 of IRC SP 13 requires bed protections at culvert / minor bridge


locations only if the stratum is erodible. The Committee was informed that this is
generally insisted upon for all structure just because type drawings incorporate
the same without any reference to aforesaid provision. Erosion of stratum
depends on amount of flow, Velocity of the flow and type of stratum. Balancing
culverts, culverts with very small or undefined catchment like in plane areas, with
hard soil as bed stratum, with very weak or better rock as bed stratum do not
require any bed protection. In such cases bed protection could be dispensed with.
The Committee recommends that the drawings should make a reference to this
provision in IRC SP 13 and designs should necessarily be done accordingly and
suitable to the site conditions of culverts/ minor bridges.

8. The Committee agreed with the suggestion that the project milestones and
project schedule stipulated in the Draft Concession or EPC contracts should be
realistic and appropriate for the project. They must take into account the time
required for initial preparation, mobilisation, design etc.

9. The Committee also agreed with the suggestion that Liquidated Damages (LD), if
any levied for not attaining the intermediate milestones should be refunded if the
subsequent milestone is achieved as per schedule.

10. It was informed that the cost estimates for the projects were found to be
unrealistic, especially when the cost estimates are not revised to account for a
time gap between the DPR preparation and the bids. Sometimes many of the
activities insisted from the concessionaire/contractor as part of
specification/contract conditions are not costed in the estimate. This resulted in
significant variance with the estimated costs creating subsequent problems in
acceptance. The Committee felt that such situations should be avoided.

11. The Committee was informed of cases where the concessionaire/contractor


demanded some trial stretch to adopt a new technology. The approval to such
trial stretch was delayed defeating the very purpose of trial stretch in a work to
complete in a short period say 30 months. The Committee feels that there should
be no objection to approve such trial stretches for adoption of new technologies
30
since construction risk/responsibility are with the concessionaire/contractor only.
Further the withholding of permissions for trial stretches for new technologies
would work against development of new and modern technologies in construction
of highways.

12. The following amendments are suggested in respect of provisions of the model
concession agreement.

a. The concessionaire may be allowed advertisement rights where


advertisements can be permitted and allowed to retain income from the
same
b. Incomes from sources such as parking in the spaces below flyovers, income
from avenue plantation, from median plantation especially from flowery
beds, income from optical fibres, and income from facilities e.g.
restaurants etc. as created by the concessionaire may be allowed so as to
provide additional sources of income and improve project viability.
c. Reimbursement of royalty charges should be considered. In any case
changes in royalty rates should be reimbursed.

3.9 Equipment

3.9.1 The Committee held discussions on the matter of expeditious implementation of


projects with several manufacturers of equipment for highway construction. The
presenters indicated that equipment/machineries on par with the best in the world are
now available in the country.

3.9.2 The Committee recommends that the construction of highways in the country is now at
a stage where it is poised to take strides to match the construction standards followed
in advanced countries. More automated construction is now possible using heavy
concrete plants (240 cum/ hr.), slip form pavers capable of high output, transit mixers,
mobile plants concrete boom placer pumps now available in the country.

3.9.3 The Committee suggests that the use of such equipment for medium and large national
highway projects is easily affordable in view of the size of the project and recommended
so that the construction is carried out using such equipment capable of achieving
impeccable quality and durability. Use of such equipment would also necessitate change
in specifications to incorporate the benefits flowing from such use (e.g. increased layer
thickness for embankment/pavement construction etc.). In some cases, such special
equipment may not be in the list of approved equipment of MORTH or in the
specifications. However, the same should be allowed on the basis of such proposal from
the concessionaire.
31
3.10 Need for Vocational Training of Skilled Workmen

3.10.1 As per normal practice in construction industry almost each skilled worker needs a
helper. In course of time these helpers pick up the skills and become skilled
workers. Since, such workers do not have proper vocational training; their work lacks
fineness of quality.

3.10.2 All advanced countries and even some developing countries engage skilled workers
knowing at least two if not three trades and even Indian organizations working abroad
follow this practice. For example, a shuttering carpenter can double as bar-bender or
reinforcement fitter; an excavator operator as dozer operator and so on. This way, the
constructors save on indirect costs and pay their skilled workmen higher wages.
Development of multi-trade skilled workmen i.e. workmen knowing more than one skill
would help to overcome such shortage. With the massive development of the highway
development on hand, the availability of such multi trade skilled workers will prove to
be a great advantage.

3.10.3 The Committee therefore recommends that construction related National institutes e.g.
Central Institute of Mining and Fuel Research, Rookee and National Institute of
Construction Management and Research be encouraged to conduct courses
for developmentof such multi-trade skills.

3.11 Issues pertaining to Road Safety

3.11.1 The Committee came across some suggestions towards improving road safety. Some of
these are covered in the following paragraphs.

3.11.2 The Committee, concerned with the increasing number of accidents and fatalities on the
highways in this country, realized that rash driving was one of the chief reasons
contributing to accidents. The Committee felt that introduction of CCTV cameras at
frequent intervals on the highways and monitoring of speedy driving and levying
deterrent fines could be considered to reduce accidents due to over-speeding. The
deployment of drone technology involving drones with cameras to carry out
surveillance of the highways could also be considered. The Committee also
recommends that the Highway authorities should provide funds to the police
authorities to procure equipment such as speed guns etc. to enforce traffic discipline.
The income received out of imposing fines can be retained by Highway Authority

3.11.3 The Committee felt that some measures such as providing anti crash barriers along the
approaches to a tunnel to lead traffic into the carriageway inside the tunnel should be
32
scrupulously ensured to avoid vehicles crashing against ends of the tunnels/footpaths/
kerbs. The photograph below shows an arrangement of such anti crash barriers, whose
face should be flush with the face of the crash barriers/wall in tunnel.

3.11.4 The design of concrete anti crash barriers with pipe railing on top should be such as to
provide a smooth sliding surface without obstruction to avoid damage to a vehicle
which crashes and slides along the crash barrier. The arrangement in use presently is
deficient from this angle (Fig A). The accompanying photograph (Fig B) also shows the
desirable arrangement (which should be adopted to take this aspect into account).

FIG A: Undesirable Arrangement

33
FIG B: Recommended Arrangement

3.11.5 Protective mesh on the overpasses provided for cross roads over the high speed roads
help prevent objects falling from the cross road on the high speed road with a potential
of causing serious accidents. The Committee recommends provision of such protective
meshes.

3.11.6 Proper pier protection for piers in median prevents fatalities in case a vehicle loses
control and heads for the piers. One type is shown in the photo above. Another can be
seen in the photo below. The committee recommends that a suitable pier protection be
provided

34
35
3.11.7 No plants which develop thick inflexible trunks should be allowed in the median or
anywhere near the carriageway since they pose a danger of instant fatalities in case of a
vehicle hitting them.

3.11.8 At every median break for U turns or right turns or pedestrian crossings, where
plantation is carried out, the height of such plantation in the median should not exceed
600 mm above the road surface for distance of 20 metres from the break. This is to
ensure clear visibility for the drivers.

3.11.9 At every median break for a right turn or a U turn, an extra waiting lane of adequate
length must be provided to keep the fast right lane in the carriageway obstruction-free.

3.11.10In ghat sections [hilly roads] it is advisable to provide an extra lane for climbing side of
the carriageway where the traffic is heavy.

3.11.11While designing signage and information boards for national highways [in fact for any
high speed roads], it must be remembered that they are meant to be read by the elderly
driver of a very fast moving vehicle. [not by the passenger]. Too much information or
too many destinations on a single board should be avoided for the same reason.

3.11.12Name of a flyover, under which there is a cross road or a U turn, should be displayed at
least 120 m before the start of the flyover so that a driver who has to take the turn has
sufficient weaving distance to move to the side road.

3.11.13Every hard object in the median or by the roadside must be provided with impact
attenuators or crash barrier to prevent instant deaths for passengers of vehicle hitting
them.

3.11.14At every Y junctions prominent marking and signage as well as impact attenuators
should be provided. Photographs below illustrate the point.

3.11.15Distance markers i.e. kilometers should be displayed prominently so that drivers of high
speed vehicles can read them easily. A sample photograph below illustrates the point

36
3.11.16Liquor shops along the highways should be discouraged.

3.11.17National Highways should e ade fo gi i g oads , so that i ju ies a d fatalities i


case of accidents are minimized.

3.11.18National highways should be subjected to road safety audit periodically.

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4. RIGID (CONCRETE) PAVEMENTS
4.1 Concrete Pavements

4.1.1 Concrete road pavements offer several advantages. They are associated with reduced
maintenance problems. The life cycle cost of a concrete pavement is generally lower in
comparison to the bituminous pavement given the design life of about 20-25 years.
However, the riding quality in concrete surface is relatively lower and is known to be
associated with more noise arising from movement of vehicles in comparison to a
bituminous road. Due to slightly higher friction coefficient, tyre bursting cases have also
been reported on these pavements especially when vehicles using old and worn out
tyres travel with high speeds. However, bituminous pavements are prone to frequent
damages due to heavy loads plying over them especially in high rainfall zones. Concrete
pavements would therefore, score over bituminous pavements on roads with high
density traffic, primarily due to their low life cycle costs and low maintenance. It is to be
noted that concrete roads are also a favored option in urban areas where drainage
conditions especially in rainy seasons cause significantly higher damages to bituminous
pavements.

4.1.2 In recent years there is notable improvement in the concrete pavement technology in
developed countries and there should be no reason why this should not be encouraged
in our country. The technologies covered in the paragraphs commencing 4.3 below
provide various benefits and aim at improving the performance of concrete pavements.

4.2 Preference of concrete pavements in certain areas

As mentioned in the above paragraph, the life-cycle cost of concrete pavements is generally
lower in comparison to bituminous pavements since the maintenance costs in respect of
concrete pavements are considerably low although bituminous pavements involve lower
capital costs. The Ministry has issued a circular indicating preference for concrete pavements
on this account. The Committee clearly feels that concrete pavements should indeed be a
preferred option in high density corridors and for highways in high rainfall zones, where
bituminous pavements, prone to damage in such conditions, involve high maintenance costs
and efforts. There are also areas where concrete pavements would be preferable in order to
obviate inconvenience to traffic due to frequent maintenance of bituminous pavements e.g.
pavements inside tunnels.

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4.3 Continuously Reinforced Concrete Pavement-(CRCP)

4.3.1 Concrete pavements constructed in India are jointed concrete pavements having
transverse contraction joints at a spacing of 3 to 4.5 m. These joints have dowel bars to
transfer the loads and are sealed. It has been observed that such jointed concrete
pavements cause discomfort to fast moving vehicles because of jerks at the transverse
joints and require renewal of sealants once in every 5 to 7 years. If the sealants are not
maintained properly, water can enter through the joints, reach the subgrade, lower its
supporting capacity and can lead to mud-pumping and loss of uniform support. Because
of these drawbacks, some advanced countries have switched over to Continuously
Reinforced Concrete Pavements (CRCP) which dispense with the provision of transverse
joints at short intervals. It is appropriate that India adopts this technology for future
concrete roads. The Indian Roads Congress has recently brought out a publication (IRC
118-2015). This document does not, however, recommend any reduction in the
thickness of CRCP in comparison to a jointed pavement. This would make CRCP costly as
compared to the conventional jointed pavement.

4.3.2 The design methodology developed in UK gives out a thickness of the CRCP which is
about 20% less than the thickness of a conventional jointed pavement. The AASHTO has
brought out a design methodology based on the Mechanistic Empirical (ME) approach,
which also results in the thickness of CRCP working out to about 20% lower in
comparison to the conventional jointed pavement.

4.3.3 A road length of about 50 km in CRCP has been constructed in the hilly area (which is
prone to heavy rainfall) adjoining Pune city. The Committee carried out a visit to this
road to inspect the pavement. It was reported that the performance of this pavement is
satisfactory in spite of the fact that the road has steep grade for a considerable length,
is subject to heavy rainfall and carries traffic of very heavily loaded construction vehicles.
The Committee found the riding quality of the pavement much better than a
conventional jointed rigid pavement. The Committee was informed that the cost of
CRCP here was comparable to jointed rigid pavement owing to the reduction of
thickness of the pavement.

39
4.3.4 The AASHTO design software based on the ME approach is based on extensive research
and the Committee recommends that the funds should be provided to enable
procurement of this software by institution such as the IIT Kharagpur with in-house
capacity of research in concrete pavement. This software could then be used by the
construction industry with the help of IIT Kharagpur for the design of the CRCP.

4.3.5 The Committee recommends that in view of the performance of the CRCP near Pune,
there should be no objection to adoption of this type of pavement in the National
Highways based on the AASHTO software. The CRCP is considered suitable to roads
inside tunnels or roads in hilly areas e.g. North East region on account of very low
maintenance requirements and highly improved riding comfort.

4.3.6 The Committee also feels that a systematic performance assessment of the CRCP
constructed near Pune could be carried out through an institution such as the Pune
Engineering College with the association of IIT Kharagpur and CRRI and the Ministry
should make funds available for such performance assessment.

4.4 Prestressed Concrete Panels

4.4.1 The construction of concrete pavement even where slip form pavers are used involves
closure of the road for about a month for curing and strength gain before traffic is
allowed over this pavement. This rather serious disadvantage of cast in situ concrete
pavement can be eliminated by adopting the technology of prestressed concrete panel
pavement. This technology obviates severe inconvenience to traffic during construction
of conventional concrete pavement and would be eminently suitable especially in urban
areas. The advantages of this technology are

i. The pavement could be opened to traffic without waiting for curing, joint
cutting etc.
ii. Construction of the prestressed panels in factory like controlled conditions
results in a high quality of the concrete pavement with low degree of
variability in strength.
iii. The prestressed concrete pavement would result in a reduced thickness of
the pavement.
iv. Improved performance and durability of the pavement.
v. The possibility of taking up work on multiple fronts thereby resulting in
early completion

4.4.2 The technology is successfully used in many countries and the Committee recommends
adoption of this technology in India. However, the Committee recommends that the
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large scale adoption of this technology could be taken up after a trial stretch of about 15
km is taken up and constructed preferably in a National Highway project to be taken up
in immediate future. The Committee interacted with the research scholars and
academicians from the Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology, Nagpur who are
engaged in research on this subject. The Committee suggests therefore, that a stretch
in Maharashtra near Nagpur which is already proposed/ about to be proposed in the
immediate near future for execution could be identified for this trial. The performance
of the prestressed panel pavement could be observed for a period of 2 years and the
technology taken up for large scale adoption in the National Highways. The Committee
recommends constitution of a technical committee to guide the Ministry to prepare the
consultancy document and guide the performance monitoring. The Committee suggests
that the same consultant be appointed for the pre-construction / construction and post
construction stages.

4.5 Concrete Overlay over Existing Bituminous Surface

4.5.1 Bituminous roads have a short life and require frequent maintenance. The existing
bituminous pavements in National Highways and State Highways are often seen to be
structurally inadequate to carry the heavy loads they are subjected to. It has to be
appreciated that the strengthening of the existing pavements in National Highways and
State Highways might be regarded as a major challenge in the coming years.

4.5.2 The conventional approach in strengthening of the bituminous pavements is to provide


a bituminous overlay. This option does not eliminate the problem of frequent
maintenance of the bituminous pavement but perpetuates it since the bituminous
pavement is susceptible to damage due to heavy loads with their traction and braking
actions especially in rainy seasons. An alternative promising option which has emerged
in the recent years is the white-topping. The Indian Roads Congress has already issued a

41
guideline in special publication SP-76 covering this technology. The advantages of
concrete overlays on a bituminous pavement are summarized below.

i. Long life of concrete overlay


ii. Very low maintenance
iii. Improvement in the riding quality in comparison to the bituminous pavement
subjected to frequent damages e, g. potholes.
iv. Hard wearing surface
v. No adverse impact due to oil/ diesel spillage
vi. Good reflectivity and visibility
vii. Fuel economy due to better riding comfort
viii. Assured availability of cement as opposed to bitumen from the depleting crude oil
reserves.
ix. Possibility of using materials such as fly ash which besides generating economy,
improve durability of white topping.

4.5.3 The technology of concrete overlay has been used in the peripheral road near Bangalore
where Nandi Economic Corridor Enterprises (NECE) have constructed a road comprising
concrete overlay on the bituminous pavement. The bituminous pavement was
constructed with a total pavement thickness of 590 mm comprising bituminous layer
140 mm thick (Bituminous concrete 40 mm + Dense Bituminous Macadam 50 mm
+Bituminous Macadam 50 mm) which in turn, has been laid over Wet Mix Macadam
and Granular Sub Base laid over a well compacted 500 mm thick subgrade. The road
had suffered damages and settlements due to heavy loads plying over the pavement for
some time. The NECE were committed to provide a concrete pavement as per contract
and decided to provide a concrete overlay over the bituminous pavement. The design
basis was IRC 76-2008, IRC 58-2011 for a traffic intensity of 10497 Commercial Vehicles
Per Day (in 2013), Rate of increase of traffic 7.5 % per year, Axle load of 18 T,
Temperature differential of 20.30 C between top and bottom slab, subgrade CBR of 7-
10%. The panel size adopted was 1x1 m and the thickness of the panel was 180 mm.
Committee also had an opportunity, in its visit to Pune, to inspect some stretches near
Shivaji Nagar Bus Stand, Pune where this technology has been adopted.

42
4.5.4 The road was inspected by the Committee members on 6 th November 2015. The
Committee found that the performance of the road was good although the road had
significant number of heavy commercial vehicles plying on it. Minor damages in
chipping of corners was reported to have been provided with epoxy repairs. No
settlements were reported even at the locations of high embankment (about 10 m).

4.5.5 The Committee is of the view that a systematic performance assessment study should
be instituted by the Ministry for the NECE road to quantify the riding quality, noise
levels, traffic and axle loads etc.

4.5.6 The Committee is of the view that concrete overlays on the existing bituminous
pavements (where the thickness of the bituminous pavement is adequate) should be
considered for adoption where eminently suitable e.g. in urban areas etc. New
Guidelines also allow use of this technology for new roads wherein instead of flexible
pavement appropriate sub base, base and concrete overlay in such panels is proposed.
The cost of such pavements being comparable to flexible pavement enable them
emerge as an economical alternative for urban bypasses or even for new carriageways
in four-laning project etc. Panel sizes of 1mx1m or 1.75mx1.75m should be considered.

4.5.7 The Committee feels that stretches at the toll plazas on the national highways or truck
lay byes could be provided with such panel pavements.

4.6 Bituminous Overlay over Jointed Rigid Pavement

4.6.1 The conventional jointed pavement is beset with disadvantage of a rather low riding
quality. Noise pollution and also tyre bursting due to high-speed and higher friction
between tyres and the concrete surface are also regarded as disadvantages. These
problems can be addressed by providing a bituminous overlay. The overlay could be
bituminous open graded permeable wearing course with rubberized bitumen. This
course termed as open graded friction course (OGFC) avoids the problems of accidents
on high speed roads during rains due to skidding, lower visibility and problems caused
by spray and splashing of water. This also obviates the problem of skidding of vehicles
over the older concrete pavements rendered smooth by traffic.

4.6.2 Such OGFC pavements, constructed with high quality, polish resistant aggregates have
an outstanding capacity for providing and maintaining good frictional characteristics
over the operating range of speeds on high speed highways. Their macro texture
facilitates drainage of water from the tyre/pavement interface, improving tyre contact
with the pavement and reducing the potential for hydroplaning and resulting skidding of
vehicles.

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4.6.3 The typical details of such open graded wearing course are given in Annexure 4.1

4.6.4 The Committee has noted that advanced countries follow the practice of providing such
open graded friction courses on concrete pavements and there should be no objection
to provide such overlays on high speed concrete roads to derive the advantages
referred above. The Committee therefore recommends adoption of this technology
with immediate trials on some trial stretches on the existing National Highways to
validate the specifications and to enable adoption of this technology on a large scale.

4.7 Self-Compacting Concrete for Pavements

4.7.1 The technology of Self-Compacting Concrete (SCC) has been evolved to ensure that
concrete compacts without the use of vibrators or requiring even the least compaction
efforts. This helps reduce noise pollution on account of use of vibrators. Self-
Compacting-concrete uses additives developed in recent years that help concrete flow
and compact itself. Besides, it can also use fly-ash available in abundance to meet the
requirement of cementitious content. Thus SCC is reported to be only very marginally
(upto about 5%) costly when compared to normal concrete, while offering significant
advantages. Ordinary screed vibrator or simple fixed form pavers are adequate for
concrete roads using this type of construction This technology not only ensures good
compact concrete but also ensures proper line and level of the concrete pavement. The
Committee recommends that the technology would be suitable especially in urban
areas where long stretches would not be available for construction of concrete
pavements and work has to be carried out in small stretches, thereby rendering use of
slip form pavers impossible.

4.7.2 The Committee recommends that the technology should be deployed using trial
stretches followed up by its use where suitable.

4.8 Research on Concrete Roads

4.8.1 The Committee notes that the technology of concrete road needs a continual
improvement based on research. The Committee has identified some topics, listed
below, for research in concrete pavements and recommends that adequate funding
should be provided to carry out research in these subjects and the findings of the
research schemes should be used to introduce these technologies for large scale
adoption in the construction of national highways and other roads in the country. This
may be a research program spread over medium and long durations and the Committee
recommends that funding should be made available considering its utility in projects.
The Committee recommends that a lead academic institute e.g. IIT, Khargpur, should

44
take up these research projects. The Panel of Experts (covered in the Chapter Two)
could provide advice on the matters pertaining to such research.

i. Behavior and design principles of CRCP concrete


ii. Voided DLC as a base for new high density roads with paneled concrete
iii. Low strength concrete DLC and its effect on rigid pavement behavior
iv. Cement grouted bituminous macadam
v. High volume fly ash concrete for road pavement
vi. Evolution of appropriate specifications for road construction if the base is
rocky
vii. Use of polymer fibers and steel fibers for improvement in concrete
properties
viii. Evolving new fatigue equation in fiber concrete as it improves the ductility
ix. Stresses caused due to temperature and temperature variation along
depth
x. FEM model for rigid pavement and panel concrete
xi. Evaluation of fatigue life of different layers
xii. Bituminous overlay over concrete pavement
xiii. Design and construction basis for prestressed concrete panels
xiv. Stabilized soil base in place of conventional DLC
xv. Self-Compacting Concrete for Pavements

45
5. FLEXIBLE (BITUMINOUS) PAVEMENTS
5.1 New Technologies for Flexible Pavements

5.1.1 It is noteworthy that a majority of the roads in the country comprise flexible pavements.
This is owing to the low capital cost and access to equipment and easy availability of
bitumen at all locations across the country. The Committee became conscious of the
need to identify room for improvements and innovations in flexible pavement
technology to unravel opportunities of improvement in economy, quality, durability and
sustainability in road construction.

5.1.2 The Committee interacted with various experts as well as proponents of several
proprietary technologies in its meetings. (Annexure 5). Following the suggestions
offered in these interactions, the Committee deliberated the matter comprehensively
and identified the following technologies (in addition to the existing technologies) for
adoption in flexible pavements.

1. Use of gap graded wearing course with rubberized bitumen


2. Bituminous concrete with polymer modified bitumen
3. Bituminous Overlay over Jointed Rigid Pavement.
4. Use of Warm Asphalt for reduction in Environmental Pollution.
5. Use of stabilization using cement / lime / fly ash/ cementitious chemical
additives for soil stabilization, granular sub base and base course stabilization
including full /partial depth reclamation including non- bituminous layers.
6. Functionalized polyethylene modifier for modified bitumen and VG 40
7. Glass fibre polyester hybrid geosynthetic Paving Mat
8. Use of nano-technology for different aspects of road construction
9. Cold in-situ recycling of asphalt pavement using foam bitumen/emulsions.
10. Hot in-situ recycling
11. Thickness of renewal coat and type of treatment for Ministry and NHDP
projects
12. Use of geosynthetic material for road pavement

5.1.3 Flexible pavement is the most commonly encountered pavement type for road
construction in India. Construction of such pavements results in material consumption
giving rise to serious environmental concerns (e.g. increased quarrying and
transportation etc.). The need to take efforts to conserve natural resources is therefore
imperative. The revised IRC 37 has incorporated major changes and the Special

46
Publication IRC SP 120-2015 has also undergone revision to introduce newer
technologies of recycling. In terms of design of flexible pavements, the new IRC 37
provides several choices for road crust. This in turn, allows liberty to the concessionaire/
contractors in the DBFOT (PPP) or EPC modes respectively, to select suitable option and
thereby save materials e.g. bitumen, diesel and aggregate etc. The Committee therefore,
was of the view that new technologies e.g. recycling of pavements should be
encouraged to mitigate adverse impact on environment.

5.2 Use of Gap Graded Wearing Course with Rubberized Bitumen

5.2.1 Gap Graded mixes with a rubberized bitumen binder are being successfully used on high
volume and other roads of many states of USA to obtain a durable wearing course.
Bitumen-rubber binder consists of a blend of hot bitumen and crumb rubber (CR) made
from scrap or waste tyres. High viscosity bitumen-rubber binder with a minimum crumb
rubber content of 20% by weight of bitumen having a minimum viscosity of 1500 CP at
1770 C is used to obtain Bitumen rubber mixes which are resistant to rutting and fatigue
fracture along with reduced ageing due to (i) larger binder film thickness and (ii) carbon
black in the crumb rubber which imparts resistance to ultraviolet rays. Trial sections of
gap graded bitumen-rubber mixes laid on six lane heavily trafficked National Highways
in West Bengal, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu (Annexure 5.1) have been seen to
perform well. Apart from a long life of over ten years as reported abroad, a special
feature of such a wearing course is noticeably reduced noise, reduced wear of tyres,
enhanced skid resistance and significantly improved riding quality.

5.2.2 The Committee recommends the large scale implementation of the above technology
for the following reasons:

i. The technology uses wastes and helps their safe disposal without
greenhouse gas emissions while enhancing the performance of
bituminous pavements in terms of longer life, enhanced skid resistance,
reduced noise and highly improved riding quality etc.

ii. The theoretical basis of the technology is sound and is well understood,

iii. The research and field experience pertaining to this technology is


enormous and very encouraging,

iv. Adoption of this useful technology is expected to require only minor


additional capital investment, which is outweighed by the advantages
gained.

47
5.3 Bituminous Concrete with Polymer Modified Bitumen

5.3.1 Considerable length of roads in India has already been constructed using polymer
modifiers which work towards improving the fatigue capacity (which gets almost
doubled).

5.3.2 In view of the fact that the fatigue capacity of the pavement gets doubled, the
Committee recommends the use of polymer modifiers for bituminous pavements.

5.4 Use of Modifiers: Research to facilitate Quantification of Benefits

5.4.1 The scale of highway development to be undertaken in the country is huge. Many of the
roads would feature bituminous pavements. In the current scenario modified binders
such as polymer modified binders, crumb rubber modified binders and natural rubber
modified binders are being increasingly used in Indian highways; specially to alleviate
failures of the pavement due to increased stress levels and benefit from the fatigue
properties of modified bitumen. There is a need to develop performance based
specifications for the use of bituminous mixes with these modified binders. While IS:
15462- 2004 outlines the technical specification related to these modified binders,
Indian Roads Congress revised the specifications related to modified binders and
introduced modifier independent parameters (IRC: SP:53, 2010). The committee came
across a view that although the fatigue performance of the pavement improves with the
use of modified bitumen in qualitative terms, the quantitative assessment of the
expected increase in service life vis-à -vis the increased initial cost need to determined
and analyzed especially in view of the increased cost of these modifiers.

5.4.2 The Committee came across studies carried out at IIT Madras about use of different
modified binders in different climatic regions of the country and at different traffic
levels, as part of a DST sponsored research project at IIT Madras. One grade of
bituminous concrete mix was tested with crumb rubber, elastomer and plastomer
modifiers further developing fatigue equations to predict rutting and cracking in the
bituminous mixes with the above modified binders based on the laboratory
performance studies.

5.4.3 Dr. Veerraghavan at IIT Madras presented a viewpoint to the Committee that there is a
need to carry out field performance under actual traffic, climate and environmental
conditions to supplement and confirm the observations in the laboratory performance
studies. The Committee felt that performance of national highways where modified
bitumen is used could be monitored periodically, so that calibration factors to predict
the performance of pavements using mechanistic-empirical pavement design procedure
can be developed. Test sections constructed with different modified binders are to be
48
selected in different climatic regions of the country catering to different magnitudes of
traffic levels, rainfall etc. Monitoring of structural and functional condition of these test
sections say twice/thrice every year for a minimum period of three years would help
develop shift factors to predict the field performance from the laboratory test results
which in turn would help evolve appropriate calibration factors for design of pavements
with modified binders using mechanistic – empirical pavement design procedure. The
Committee recommends that research studies should be carried out by networking
different reputed institutes of National Importance in different regions of the country
and the CRRI to fulfill this objective. This will result in a large scale use of modified
bitumen through the availability of a credible methodology of assessing the benefits.

5.5 Bituminous Overlay over Jointed Rigid Pavement

The conventional jointed rigid pavement usually faces criticism about riding quality, noise
pollution and also tyre bursting due to high-speed and higher temperatures due to friction
between tyres and the pavement surface. These problems can be addressed by providing a
bituminous overlay as covered in Chapter 4 (Paragraph 4.6). The details of this technology
are covered in Annexure 5.3. The technology needs to be studied on trial stretches to
validate the specifications followed by large scale implementation of this technology which
has been extensively used in several countries.

5.5 Use of Warm Asphalt for reduction in Environmental Pollution

5.5.1 Several countries have developed and started using technologies for bituminous road
construction which are environment friendly in the sense that they result in reduced
environmental pollution unlike the hot mix asphalt. The bituminous road building
process involves heating of bitumen to significantly high temperatures, causing fuel
consumption resulting in increased greenhouse gas emissions. Researchers have
developed a new technology viz. Wa Mi Asphalt WMA i hi h a additi e is
mixed with hot mix asphalt (HMA) in desired proportion in order to lower down the hot
mix temperature from 1500 C to 120-1100 C. WMA offers many significant advantages
such as energy savings, decreased emissions and fumes, besides reducing binder aging.

5.5.2 CSIR-CRRI has evaluated this technology with various types of warm mix additives
available in the country and have studied in detail, the performance of WMA technology
in comparison to HMA. On the basis of the work done by the scientists of CSIR-CRRI, the
Indian Road Congress (IRC) has brought out the interim-specification for the use of
Warm Asphalt Mix in India (IRC SP 101: 2014). Some field evaluation studies of WMA
and also some comparisons of carbon emissions of WMA with HMA have demonstrated
encouraging results. However, the use of this technology has been very limited in our
country. The Committee feels that the use of environment-friendly technologies
49
should be encouraged on the lines of many advanced countries. This Committee,
therefore, recommends incorporation of environment friendly technologies in all the
road works, which can save our non-renewable energy resources and in that light
e o e ds that the use of WMA te h olog e i luded i the Mi ist s
specifications so that the technology is adopted on a large scale for road construction in
India. The Committee recommends the use of this technology where the bituminous
mixes have to be hauled over long distances (e.g. in urban areas with plants located
outside city limits) resulting in lower laying temperatures. WMA technology would
eminently suit such situations besides providing environmental benefits mentioned
above. The details of the technology are covered in Annexure 5.4.

5.6 Stabilization using Cement / Lime / Fly ash/ Cementitious Chemical Additives for
subgrade,Sub base and Base Course

5.6.1 Stabilization: Stabilization was traditionally used for embankment and subgrade in the
past. With improved technology and improvement, stabilization has become an integral
part of all the layers of the pavement. This change has led to reduction in crust
thickness with IITPAV software provided in IRC 37 2012.The committee recommends
the use of stabilizers for all layers and parts of pavement, so as to reduce material
consumption and cost as well as permit use of local material.

5.6.1.1 Mandatory requirements for a soil stabilizer are given below:

i. Since soil can come into contact with water tables, the primary requirement
of any soil stabilizer is that it should be non-toxic and non-leaching.

ii. It should meet the durability standard as per ASTM and BIS.

iii. CBR & UCS test should simultaneously confirm the non-leachability and
durability of the stabilizer.

iv. It should reduce the normal carbon footprint and emissions (tCO2 per ton of
Stabilizer not exceeding 0.5)2

5.6.1.2 It is desirable that the stabilizer fulfills the following

i. Soil stabilizer should preferably be effective on wide range of soils and the
strength gain & bond should be irreversible.

2
CHANGER - IRF Greenhouse Gas Calculator

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ii. It should increase the CBR of the existing soil to the value required for
pavement design.
iii. It should be able to reduce Plasticity and Free Swell Index to workable levels.
iv. The modulus of rupture, residual modulus values as well as fatigue equations
as provided by the technology provider for different type of soils with they are
mixed should be confirmed by tests.
v. The use of technology should conform to the requirements of IRC 37-2012.

5.6.2 Stabilizers for Granular sub-base and base: These perform the following functions. The
technical details are provided in IRC SP 89 (2011) and IRC 37 (2012) and in Annexure 5.5.

i. Cementitious stabilizers which are used for stabilization of granular sub-base and
base should be able to bind the material.
ii. Such stabilizers should provide the required drain-ability.
iii. Resistance to cracking.

5.6.3 In view of the benefits mentioned above, the Committee recommends the use of
stabilizers in various layers of the pavements.

5.7 Functionalized polyethylene modifier for Modified bitumen (equivalent to VG 40)

5.7.1 A typical thermoplastic modifier (Annexure 5.6) polymer additive is designed for
bitumen modification and for converting VG10/VG30 into modified bitumen having
properties equivalent to VG40, which can be accordingly used for pavement design. The
modifier can be added at appropriate dosage and temperature, directly into bitumen
tank with continuous stirring for appropriate time specified by the technology provider.
This would convert VG10/VG30 into modified bitumen with properties equivalent to VG
40. This final product should be tested to possess consistent Viscosity, Softening Point
& Penetration as per specifications. Recently GOI has issued a circular that bitumen
additives will not be allowed to get VG 40. This policy needs review. Use of patented
additive /materials which have been developed after extensive lab study followed by
field trial which concluded that it is really effective in changing the properties of
VG10/VG 30 to that of VG 40 can be allowed

5.7.2 Benefits of the Technology: The technology results in the following benefits.

• The technology helps generate Modified Bitumen with consistent properties


equivalent to VG 40.
• Helps bitumen retain the viscosity as of base bitumen at mixing & paving
temperatures which improves the workability
• Provides Anti-stripping properties
51
• Improves Anti- Rutting performance
• Improves Compaction
• Reduces Fatigue Cracking
• Provides environmental benefits by reducing emission gases
• Improves storage stability to extremely high levels
• Results in a homogenous mix.

5.8 Glass fibre polyester hybrid Geosynthetic Paving Mat

5.8.1 This is a material [glass fibre - polyester hybrid geosynthetic paving mat] typically used
for, but not limited to use in joint and localized (spot) pavement repairs; and paving
mats intended for kerb to-kerb coverage to provide a moisture barrier for the pavement
structure. This helps retard reflective cracking in bituminous overlays and to provide
strengthening to structurally deficient pavements. The Committee recommends use of
this technology for the benefits it provides.

5.8.2 Following are the benefits of this technology. (Reference ASTM D 7329) Further details
are provided in Annexure5.7.

i. Holds its shape and does not shrink under the temperatures encountered in
hot-mix asphalt mix-designs.
ii. Does t st et h o defo du i g i stallatio .
iii. Withstands high temperatures, and does not melt or become brittle when the
hot mix overlay is applied.
iv. Provides a moisture barrier / waterproof layer to bridge decks and pavements.

5.9 Use of nano-technology for different aspects of road construction

The technologies are cost effective and are not yet included in the Specifications. The limited
trials of this technology have been found to be encouraging. These may be adopted after
laboratory evaluation. The details of this technology are included in Annexure5.8.

5.10 Cold in-situ recycling (CIR) of asphalt pavement

5.10.1 CIR offers In-situ cold recycling of full depth damaged asphalt layer upto25cm in a single
operation. The CIR process involves milling, granulating mixing and addition of
cementitious stabilizers or binder like foam bitumen or emulsion to rehabilitate the
damaged /cracked asphalt pavement. This process involves direct cutting of asphalt
material and granulating the same and at the same time injecting cementitious
stabilizer or bituminous foam or emulsion as binder and adding water for compaction.
The milling drum acts as mixing and milling unit.
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5.10.2 Cold Recycling involves no heating of aggregates or pavements. The only heated
component is bitumen to produce foam bitumen in case foam bitumen is used.
Emulsion can replace foam bitumen which also is a non-heated component. The details
are provided in IRC 120 (2015).

5.10.3 In view of the following benefits the committee recommends the use of this technology.

 Savings in energy and natural resources, No emissions (green technology)


 Usage of 100% Recycled Asphalt Pavement(RAP) as against 20% in Hot Mix
 Moisture Independent,
 High rate of output upto 220 Tons/Hour
 No Pre-screening of Recycled Asphalt Pavement (RAP).
 Temperature Independent Paving (Stock Piling)
 Equipment needs no foundation
 Mobile application.
 Higher output-About 1 km /day construction.

5.11 Hot In-situ Recycling

Successful field trials of this technology have been carried out in India. This technology has
the potential to save aggregates and is non -polluting. The Committee recommends
adoption of this technology on a large scale. The details of the technology are provided in
IRC 120 (2015). The Committee recommends the use of hot in-situ recycling for pavements
so as to provide immense environmental benefits.

5.12 Thickness of renewal coat and type of treatment for Ministry and NHDP projects

5.12.1 The purpose of renewal coat is to meet the performance standard specially roughness
index and skid resistance and address the surface defects. Even though the renewal coat
does not serve the purpose of strengthening coat it enhances the durability of
pavement and prevents its deterioration. What is needed is to ensure that the
pavement is strong enough for the traffic before the next renewal coat is laid. The
Committee was informed that the absence of specific guidelines regarding renewal of
wearing coats results in non-uniform practices in respect of renewals of bituminous
pavements in various jobs. The Committee therefore, deliberated the matter with
experts and suggests the following.

5.12.2 It is suggested that whenever surface roughness exceeds the limit prescribed in IRC 82
2015 renewal coat may be regarded as warranted. This code provides guidelines on the

53
remedial measures and also rating of road pavement after noting the various types of
surface distress. The main criterion i.e. surface roughness is also defined. The recently
eleased I‘C Recommended Practice for Recycling of bituminous pavement
covers the methodology of recycling which can also serve the purpose of renewal or
strengthening. Similarly, IRC 81 Tentative specifications for slurry seal and Micro
surfacing p o ides guidelines for treatment for surface improvement which can also
serve as guidelines for renewal coat. The Committee felt that there was, however the
need to define appropriate criterion for determining the type of renewal and thickness
of bituminous concrete (which is the commonly adopted renewal treatment). The
Committee therefore suggests the following.

5.12.3 It is suggested that whenever surface roughness exceeds the limit prescribed in IRC 82
renewal coat may be regarded as warranted. In such situations, Benkelman Beam
Deflections may be obtained to verify if overlay or strengthening layer is needed, taking
into account the existing crust and after assessment of traffic in the intervening period
before the next renewal coat. Falling weight deflectometer results could also be used.
Based on these, the decision of whether renewal coat is sufficient, or if strengthening
overlay is needed could be taken if the pavement surface is otherwise free from cracks
rutting etc.

5.12.4 If roughness measurements exceed the limits specified in IRC 82, and if the existing crust
is adequate for the traffic of 15 years as per above criterion, micro-surfacing may be
provided for renewal. If the existing crust is adequate only for traffic till the time for
next wearing coat, 30 mm thick BC could be provided if the traffic (before the next
wearing coat) is less than 50 MSA. In case the traffic is more than or equal to 50 MSA, a
40 mm thick BC could be provided. In case the existing crust is not adequate to take
traffic till the next renewal coat, overlay should be provided as per requirement. If in
situ cold recycling or hot in situ recycling is adopted in that case the recommended
thickness would be thickness of processed layer.

5.13 Use of Geo-Synthetic Materials in Pavement

There is a shortage of aggregate in several parts of the country and good quality
aggregate have to be hauled over long distances. In the north east region, the aggregate
does not have adequate strength and get crushed under the load of roller. Geosytentic
materials such as geogrids, geocomposites as filter areas or geocells can perform an
important role in improving the properties of aggregate due to the confining effects, and
use of such materials would help not only reduce material consumption but enable use of
the local materials. The Committee recommends that research/ trial stretches based on
this technology be taken on priority followed by large scale use of this technology.

54
5.14 Imported bitumen

Experts have pointed out to the Committee that the quality of bitumen produced in the
country does not always meet the stipulated (IS) standards. The Committee therefore,
suggests holding of a high level meeting with petroleum ministry to bring this issue into
focus so as to take suitable corrective steps. The Committee was also informed that with the
revised policy for custom duty on import of bitumen, imported bitumen conforming to the
stipulated standards of quality is on par with indigenous bitumen in terms of cost.
Considering that Crude is also imported and treated for producing bitumen, import of
bitumen may not result in loss of foreign exchange. Several major and minor projects are
contemplated under the Sagarmala Project of the GOI. Imported bitumen unloaded at these
ports would also result in saving in transport costs. The Committee was informed that about
one lakh ton of bitumen required for the improvement of NH 17 could be imported at the
ports of Dighi or Jaigad and this can reduce the average lead of transport of bitumen by 150
km. The Committee recommends that this aspect needs to be studied and considered to
ensure that bitumen used on highway projects conforms to the stipulated quality.

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6. TUNNELS
6.1 Types of Contracts

Tunnel construction is generally taken up in three types of contracts viz. i) Design Build
Finance Operate and Transfer(DBFOT) concessions which are implemented on the PPP basis,
ii) Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) / Design-Build Formats iii) Item Rate
Contracts. Tunnel construction has been taken up in our country in all the above formats.
The Committee deliberated with experts in the area of tunnel construction and framed its
recommendations for the various stages of tunnel construction.

6.2 Stages of Tunnel Construction

The various stages of tunnel construction are as follows and the recommendations
pertaining to each of these stages is covered in the current chapter.
1) Planning
2) Design
3) Bidding
4) Construction

6.3 Improvements Required at the Planning Stage

6.3.1 Tunnel Alignment and Location

6.3.1.1 Tunnels are expensive structures. Provision of tunnels will therefore depend on
assessment of benefits and costs. The benefits could be direct like saving in travel
distance or climbing up and down or indirect such as easing of traffic or creating
shortcuts in public interest.

6.3.1.2 One important purpose of providing tunnels is to reduce driving distances, climbs and
descents. Some examples are as below, though there must be many more such
situations nationally:

i) The most striking example is the Chenani-Nashri Tunnel on the Jammu Srinagar
Highway NH 44. The distance between Chenani [km 89] to Nashri (km 130] along
the existing Highway is 41 km. After the 9 km long Chenani-Nashri Tunnel is
commissioned, the road distance would reduce to about 10 km, thereby reducing
the travel distance by very significantly by 31 km. At present, the existing
highway passes through Patnitop and the vehicles have to climb up and down

56
respectively for about 800 m. This climb and descent will also be saved. Normal
travel time is expected therefore, to reduce from about 2.5 hours to about 15
minutes.

ii) The Tunnel below the Rohtang Pass on the vital Manali Keylong Leh Highway NH
3 allows vehicles to avoid climbing to the Rohtang pass at elevation 3978 m
(presently vehicles have to climb up and down respectively for about 878 m).
The road close to Rohtang Pass receives heavy snowfall and blizzards during
winter months and the highway remains closed for nearly four months in a
year. The 8.8 km long tunnel being built at an elevation of about 3,100 m
under the Rohtang Pass will reduce the distance between Manali and Keylong
by about 60 km. The climb and descent will also be avoided and travel time
between Manali and Keylong will reduce by about 2 hours.

iii) The possible tunnel on Mumbai – Goa Highway (NH 17) between Mahad and
Khed. The e isti g hill oad is a t o la e oad ith sha p “ u es. The
mountain top is steeply sloping across the alignment of the highway and some
portion is already showing signs of settlement. This portion is also susceptible
to frequent landslides and blockages during the rainy season. Because of the
terrain it is difficult to carry out the presently proposed four laning and
subsequent six laning. Hence a new road bypassing this mountain top
between existing km 271 (elevation 166 m) and km 284 (elevation 80 m) has
been suggested. Length of the bypass will be about 9 km including 1,720 m
twin tunnels. The travelling distance will reduce from 13 km to 9 km and the
climb saved will be 194 m while travelling towards Goa and 280 m while
travelling towards Mumbai.

6.3.1.3 Tunnels are also provided to overcome blockage of roads by avalanches and glaciers. An
example is the Z-Morh Tunnel on Srinagar-Leh Highway NH 1 D near Sonamarg. During
winter, highway length of about 6 km gets blocked due to avalanches and glaciers. The
6 km long tunnel has been proposed to overcome this problem.

6.3.1.4 Tunnels could also be considered to address grade separation of traffic at busy
junctions. A tunnel could provide a better alternative in comparison to a flyover
(although a flyover is a cheaper alternative) where a flyover is not considered suitable
for aesthetic reasons. Tunnels also become unavoidable when a road is required to
pass through populated areas where the provision of flyovers is not feasible.

6.3.1.5 While de idi g o the ho izo tal alig e t of a tu el, the pla e s atte pt is to pla
a tunnel on straight alignment so as to minimize its length. If the portals are located
on steep mountain slopes, the roadway on emerging from the tunnel, has to take a
57
sharp left or right turn to merge with the contour. This creates an accident prone
situation. It is recommended that a curve should be introduced in the tunnel alignment
to ease the situation.

6.3.1.6 Care Needed for Planning of Water Drains:

a) Provision of Catch-water Drains above the portals and along the two sides of open
cuts at the ends of the tunnels is absolutely necessary so that the rain water
running down the mountain slopes does not drain into the open cut.

b) Where tunnels are located in areas with heavy rainfall, attempt should be made to
provide open cuts with invert sloping down away from the portal. This will prevent,
rain water falling directly into the open cut, from flowing into the tunnel.

6.3.1.7 The Committee makes the following recommendations based on its interaction with
experts and the experiences shared by these experts.

i) Provision of tunnels should be made on the basis of assessment of benefits and


costs. The benefits could be direct like saving in travel distance or climbing
up and down or indirect such as easing of traffic or creating shortcuts in
public interest. It is suggested that while framing every DPR, the possibilities
of providing tunnels as an alternative to detours/ circuitous routes in hilly
areas should be explored.

ii) The provision of artificial Cut and Cover Tunnels of adequate lengths at the
location of deep open cuts, outside excavated portals at entrances of bored
tunnels and potential slip zones along the alignment of roads will help to
avoid blockage due to landslides and resultant hindrance to traffic (e.g. in
the Himalayas). The length of such a cut and cover tunnel beyond the bored
tunnel will depend on the local geotechnical conditions. The cut and cover
tunnel could be in cast-in-situ concrete or prefabricated steel frames. (or
corrugated steel plates). In locations where due to geological conditions, it is
not feasible to provide cut and cover tunnel in front of a slip zone, a tunnel
going below the slip should be provided.

iii) Alignment of the roadway going into and coming out of a tunnel should merge
smoothly with the contour. For achieving such smooth merging, curves
should be introduced in the horizontal alignment of the tunnel.

iv) Surface drainage above the portal and along the two sides of open cuts should
be so designed that rain water running down the mountain slopes does not
58
drain into the open cut. If possible, invert of the open cuts should be made
to slope down away from the portal to prevent rain water from flowing into
the tunnel.

6.3.2 Location of Dump Areas, Areas for Temporary Construction Camps, Temporary Electric
Power for Construction and Explosive Magazines

6.3.2.1 Construction of Highways and particularly those involving Tunnels generate huge
amount of excavated material which is required to be properly disposed of in
designated areas approved by the Government and local authorities. Getting such
approved land is a time taking process. Land is required for Construction Camps e.g.
offices, store buildings, workshops and residential colonies for workmen. The land
could be private agricultural land, government or forest land. Getting allotment and
permissions for use of such land is also a time taking process.

6.3.2.2 Large projects such as long tunnels need significant electric power (to the extent of a
few MW). In most cases, it becomes necessary to lay long HT lines from the nearest
power stations to the receiving stations at the site. Getting such power at site is also a
time taking process.

6.3.2.3 Open excavation is required for creation of access roads to different work spots and
development of tunnel faces. It is the first construction activity in any project.
Explosives required for excavation of rock by blasting are to be stored in specially built
and licensed explosive magazine. License is also required for carrying out blasting in
the area. Getting these licenses is also a time taking process.

6.3.2.4 Projects where the above permissions are obtained ahead of commencement of the
projects a considerable saving in construction time is seen to result {e.g. Tala H del
P oje t i Bhuta , he e a ess oads, e plosi e agazi es, o st u tio a ps a d
construction power had been provided at all the work -spots before award of contracts
and cost thereof (very small percentage of the total cost) treated as advance to the
contractor and recovered from the bills}. The contractors can commence construction
almost immediately after award of contracts and ensure its early completion, further
leading to early generation of revenues/ benefits to traffic.

6.3.2.5 The Committee felt that the period when the alignment survey is being carried out and
designs are finalized before start of construction, is available for obtaining some
permits and licenses, procurement of which usually takes some time. Feasibility Report
and the Detailed Project Report is expected to feature assessment of dump areas,
areas for temporary construction camps, construction power and capacity of explosive
magazines etc. and it is desirable that these permissions are arranged before the
59
contract is awarded. The Committee therefore, makes the following recommendations
in this regard,

6.3.2.5.1 Procurement of Land required for muck disposal and temporary construction camps,
licenses and permits for storage of explosives and arrangements for construction
power should be arranged before award of contracts, so as to avoid delays during
execution on this score.

6.3.3 Reserved Forests and No-blast Techniques

6.3.3.1 When a highway is required to be constructed through a reserved forest, restrictions


are imposed on the construction with a view to prevent disturbance to wildlife.
Blasting is usually not allowed and the construction of the tunnel is required to adopt
no-blast technique. This entails a severe limitation on the progress of work especially
in the case of rocks of high strength. Use of tunnel boring machines for short tunnels
would be extremely expensive while use of road headers for excavations in hard rocks
would be ineffective.

6.3.3.2 It may be seen that objection to permitting blasting to avoid disturbance to wildlife is
usually borne out of a misconception. Blasting (especially controlled blasting) for
tunnels [as opposed to open cuts] does not cause any noise disturbance in outside
areas as all the noise gets absorbed. Further, it is possible to take abundant
precautions through the use of additional noise absorbent media in tunnel
construction in wild life areas. In view of this the permissions to tunneling by
controlled blasting through wild life areas may not be objected to, subject of course, to
taking all the necessary precautions and monitoring. The Committee therefore
recommends the following.

6.3.3.2.1 Adoption of controlled blasting for tunnels (with appropriate noise abatement
measures and monitoring during execution) should be considered even in the reserved
forest areas, and special permission from the Ministry of Environment and Forests
should be obtained preferably before the award of work of such tunnels.

6.4 Design Stage

For DBFOT Contracts and those on EPC Basis, designs are to be prepared by the
Concessionaire / Contractors and submitted to authorities for approval. Actual construction
is carried out as per the approved drawings. In case of Item-Rate Contracts, the designs are
prepared by the authorities. The Committee recommends that the concessionaires (for PPP
based concessions) / contractors (for EPC based contracts) should have full latitude to design
the tunnel structures conforming to the mandatory stipulations in the contract.

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6.5 Bidding Stage

6.5.1 Detailed Project Report [DPR] usually contains valuable data including data on
geotechnical explorations. Estimated length of strata under different rock classes
expected to be met with along alignment of the tunnels is also indicated therein. The
Committee was informed that sometimes the DPR is not made available to the bidders.
Even where the DPR is made available, it comes with a disclaimer as regards the
reliability or adequacy of the data. The Committee felt that when the Employer needs
months or years to collect the data, it is impractical to expect that the bidders would
collect all the required data during the limited period of 2 or 3 months allowed for
bidding and base their bids upon the same. They rely on the geotechnical data given in
the DPR if the same is made available or base their bids on guesswork possibly
contemplating the most unfavorable geotechnical conditions. This is certain to result in
unrealistic bids.

6.5.2 In case of the tunnels, geotechnical data is the most basic data for deciding the kind of
rock supports to be provided, equipment, methodology and time required for
construction. It is therefore, appropriate that the bids should be based on the
geotechnical data provided in the bid documents. In case of a variation between
expected length of strata under different rock classes given in the tender and that
actually met at site, the contract price could be adjusted. This will be in line with
appropriate sharing of risks while preventing speculative and unrealistic bids. The
Committee therefore recommends the following.

6.5.2.1 DPR should be made available to the bidders with all the details of investigations/
geotechnical data for bidders to base their bids. A method should be provided for
adjustment to the contract price due to the difference between the lengths of tunnel in
the strata encountered and that expected on the basis of geotechnical data available in
the DPR/ bid documents. The adjustment could be in monetary form in case of item-
rate and EPC contracts and monetary form or suitable adjustment in concession period
in case of the DBFOT concessions.

6.6 Construction Stage

6.6.1 Tunnel is a hole made in the ground for connecting two points. The ground through
which tunneling is to be carried out could be either a slipped mass which is found
particularly in Himalayas or soft ground such as sand, clay, silt and mixture thereof;
lithomarge, soft rocks (e.g. Mud-stone, Clay-stone or Silt stone) or hard rocks (e.g.
basalt, granite). Ground could have different properties (e.g. water-charged, jointed or
containing explosive and obnoxious gases). The ground could be one with a very high
61
cover such as in the Himalayas or could be below water bodies or in populated areas.
Tunneling in all such cases usually adopts no-blast techniques such as road headers or
tunnel boring machines (TBM) or drill and blast method as per the New Austrian
Tunneling Method (NATM).

6.6.2 No Blast Techniques

6.6.2.1 No-blast Techniques are used in situations where blasting cannot be carried out due to
presence nearby of sensitive structures, for tunnels in and below populated areas and
reserve forests etc. Excavation with Road Headers and TBMs are the only practical
solutions. However, such excavation is expensive as compared with that by Drill &
Blast Method, and has to be used when higher expenses are justified.

6.6.2.2 Road Headers can excavate tunnel of any shape. A Road Header is a crawler mounted
hydraulic boom with a rotary cutting head at its front end. The boom can be moved
up or down and right or left. The boom presses the rotating cutting head into the rock
face, cuts the rock into small fragments which drop down to the invert of the tunnel.
Collector arms of the machine pull the muck onto an apron which transfers the muck
onto a trailing conveyor for depositing the muck into muck disposal vehicles. The
toughest Road Header available as of now can cut rock of up to UCS 120 MPa to any
shape. Rocks of UCS over 120 MPa can be cracked and excavated by applying
hydraulic rock splitters or by filling swelling chemicals into holes drilled in the rock face.
However, these methods are very slow and not meant for mass excavation.

6.6.2.3 Modern Full Face Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM] comprises a rotating circular head with
several cutters mounted on its face. As the cutter head rotates, it presses the cutters
into the tunnel face, cuts rock into small fragments, picks up the dislodged rock
fragments with its muck collectors and drops the fragments onto the head of a trailing
conveyor for depositing them into muck disposal vehicles. TBMs can excavate only
circular tunnels of the diameter for which they are designed. Presently available TBMs
can efficiently excavate rock of UCS of 200MPa. However, 9.96 m dia. TBMs that can
excavate rocks of upto 350 MPa are under manufacture. TBMs are very fast machines
and can bore about 500 m of tunnel per month. However, for erecting a TBM and
putting it in operation, tunnel face has to be developed by carrying out open
excavation in rock by blasting.

6.6.2.4 Harder Rocks can be excavated by chiseling and by using hydraulic rock splitters but the
speed of excavation is low and not practical for large excavations.

6.6.2.5 Most of the highway tunnels under construction or under planning are twin tunnels
each with an excavated width of over 14 m. Tunnel Boring Machines for such jobs are
62
specially designed and custom-built. For works in India, time required for
procurement of such a machine covering import procedure, design and manufacture
and shipment would be about 24 months. Such a machine weighs about 2000 tons and
would need about 6 months for erection and commissioning and is unwieldy unless a
tunnel length is in excess of 10 km.

6.6.2.6 Tunnels proposed for major highways and expressways in India, have an excavated
diameter of about 14 m (which is almost the height of a five storied building). Electric
Power requirement of such a TBM is about 5,000 kW. The cost of such a TBM could be
in excess of Rs.300 Crores. Economic life of such machines is about 20,000 m.
Therefore, even if duty-free import is considered, the basic cost of deploying TBM
would be in the range of Rs.15 Crore per km.

6.6.2.7 A relative comparison of costs between the various modes would be in order. It can be
seen that the cost of Drill & Blast Method is roughly about Rs. 2,000 per cum, the cost
of excavation by Road Headers is about Rs 6,000 per cum. and the cost of excavation
by TBM is about Rs. 12,000 per cum.

6.6.3 Ground Improvement

In case of Slipped Mass and Soft Ground, the ground ahead can be improved by Advance
Grouting, Installation of Fore-poles in the form of pipes, steel bars and plates around
periphery of the tunnel to form a safe canopy. Ground Improvement is used for both no-
blast techniques and Drill Blast Techniques.

6.6.4 Drill & Blast Method as per New Austrian Tunneling Method

6.6.4.1 New Austrian Tunneling Method (NATM) is a tunneling philosophy. In olden days, Rock
Mass was rated by RMR [Rock Mass Rating] and external supporting was applied to
bring the rock mass to 100% rating by applying external rigid supports. NATM believes
in making use of inherent properties of the ground mass to form a stable opening by
provision of flexible supports.

6.6.4.2 A tunnel blast exposes a new tunnel periphery. Immediately upon exposure, the
periphery starts to deform and tries to readjust itself by mobilizing its inherent forces
and reaches a new equilibrium. NATM believes in provision of rock bolts to stitch
together the ground mass around the opening to improve its arching action and then
by rendering flexible support in the form of layers of Shotcrete with or without lattice
girder supports embedded in it, monitoring behavior of groundmass around the
opening by observing the radial deformations and controlling the deformations to an

63
acceptable limit by provision of additional rock bolts and shotcrete. This results in
considerable saving in the cost of supporting.

6.6.5 Recommendation for Best Technology for Road Tunnels

6.6.5.1 The ground mass through which a tunnel is bored is seldom homogeneous and varies
from slipped mass or soft ground near the surface, soft rock thereafter and hard rock
near the core. Even in such cases the ground mass could be heterogeneous in the core
because of foliations and faults. Contact between different rocks can be disturbed in
the form of a crushed zone. It is therefore necessary and more befitting to recommend
adoption of appropriate technology or technologies to carry out tunneling for road
tunnels under different ground conditions. All these technologies are already in use in
the road & rail tunnels and major hydel projects under construction in the Himalayas.

6.6.5.2 Since Road Headers can excavate tunnel of any shape, they are in use for construction
of road tunnels only in populated areas and in reserved forests etc. Owing to the fact
that TBMs e a ate o l a i ula tu el a d si e fo ‘oad Tu els a e ai l D
shaped, use of TBMs has not become common for Construction of Road Tunnels.

6.6.5.3 Harder Rocks can be excavated by chiseling and by using hydraulic rock splitters but
the speed of excavation is low and not practical for large excavations. On the contrary,
TBMs a e a ate o l a i ula tu el a d si e oad tu els a e ge e all D
shaped, the use of TBMs has not become common for construction of road tunnels,
besides the aspect of high costs entailed in the use of TBMs. Because of high costs of
use of TBMs, no contractor will be prepared to invest on such a TBM unless he is
assured of a very high quantum (say about 15-20 km) of tunneling with the TBM, which
seems to be a remote possibility. Having regard to these considerations, the
Committee makes the following recommendations.

6.6.6 Tunnels are expensive structures. Provision of tunnels will therefore depend on
evaluation of costs and benefits. The benefits could be direct like saving in travel
distance or climbing up and down or indirect such as easing of traffic or creating
shortcuts in public interest.

6.6.7 Tunnel Excavation by Drill and Blast Method is the cheapest and attempt should be
made to use it wherever possible, even in reserved forests by obtaining special
permission from Ministry of Environment and Forests in public interest. This has been
covered in the Paragraph 6.3.3 above.

6.6.8 Tunnels under populated areas and sensitive structures should be excavated by Road
Headers provided, the UCS of the rock is below 120 MPa, if feasible. Tunnels under
64
populated areas and sensitive structures may have to be excavated by Tunnel Boring
Machines only if the UCS of the rock is above 120 MPa, even at a prohibitive cost, as
there is no other practical method of excavation.

6.6.9 Use of Tunnel Boring Machines should also be considered for tunnels longer than 10 km
and where high speed tunneling is called for.

6.7 Provision of Tunnel Cladding

6.7.1 Tunnel Cladding is not a structural requirement. However, in most advanced countries
cladding is placed over the internal face of the concrete lining. The main function of the
cladding is to provide a reflective surface to enhance the effectiveness of the tunnel
lighting and to smoothen the exposed surface of the tunnel to facilitate mechanical
cleaning of the tunnel walls and to reduce ventilation energy losses. It also may provide
a beneficial effect, where addition of anti-drumming layers can lead to abetment of
noise levels within the tunnel. Cladding will also minimize damage to the concrete lining
due to colliding vehicles. The cladding provides a pleasing effect to the eyes of the
drivers without being distractive to safe driving. Thus keeping these issues in view, the
Committee makes the following recommendation

6.7.2 Though provision of cladding is not an absolutely necessity, cladding should be


considered to make long tunnels user-friendly.

6.8 Improvements Required in Operation and Maintenance

6.8.1 Operation and Maintenance of Road Tunnels is not a part of Construction, However, it
seems necessary to highlight the need for stricter supervision of installation and
maintenance of lighting and ventilation of long tunnels.

6.8.2 Lighting has to be such that drivers are able to see the carriageway and tunnel walls
clearly while they drive through tunnels. Because it takes time for the eye to adapt, the
light intensity gradually reduced from daylight to the lower level in the tunnel over a
certain distance. For this, long tunnels are divided into i) Entrance, ii) Threshold, iii)
Transition, iv) Interior and v) Exit Zones for tunnels with uni-directional traffic; and i)
Entrance, ii) Threshold, iii) Transition, iv) Interior, v) Transition, vi) Threshold and vii)
Entrance for tunnels with bi-directional traffic. Economy should not be attempted by
resorting to deficient lighting and ventilation.

6.8.3 The Committee recommends that in order to ensure user safety and comfort, stricter
supervision of installation and maintenance of lighting and ventilation should be carried

65
out in long tunnels. Economy should not be attempted by resorting to deficient lighting
and ventilation.

6.9 Mobile Phone Connectivity

6.9.1 These days, use of mobile phones has become very common. However, at present
connectivity is lost inside tunnels. Provision of such connectivity, would enable users to
contact the local police and emergency aid stations in case of emergency

6.9.2 The Committee therefore recommends that mobile phone service providers should be
encouraged to install transponders inside long tunnels to create connectivity.

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7. BRIDGES
7.1 Background

7.1.1 Bridges connect people. They are the lifeline for moving across obstacles in the event of
natural and man-made disasters apart from facilitating daily movement of people and
goods. They require for their designs, a combination of scientific and engineering skill
that make them capable of withstanding predetermined forces and an artistic bend of
mind to infuse order and aesthetics into shapes.

7.1.2 Modern infrastructure requires unobstructed transportation corridors at junctions of


roads, at intersection of different modes of transport such as road and railways, etc.
Bridges are provided at these locations in order to ensure smooth flow of traffic. Bridges
are also required at such intersections to improve safety and to increase traffic capacity
at the intersection.

7.1.3 Bridges are also required over natural obstructions such as rivers and other water
bodies, and over valleys in mountainous regions. Sometimes bridges are also required
as elevated roadways where existing roads at ground level are unable to provide the
required traffic capacity.

7.2 Need for Advanced Technologies

7.2.1 Although most advanced bridge technologies are already in use in India, their use has
been mainly on some selected projects. The Committee felt the need to go to an
advanced level of bridge technologies for use in national highway projects. In the view
of the Committee, this would mean use wherever required, of larger spans, bigger
elements and more sophisticated and heavier plant and equipment for their casting,
transport and erection.

7.2.2 The Committee also felt that in several roadway projects, the construction of bridges are
critical activities and determine the overall speed of project execution. The construction
cost of bridges is very high compared to cost of rigid or flexible pavement of comparable
length. The Committee also recognized the need to innovative materials, processes and
construction techniques that can provide economical, durable and fast construction of
bridges.

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7.3 Materials

7.3.1 Use of Concrete comprising cementitious additives and admixtures e.g. blast furnace
slag, fly ash pozollanas, plasticizers, super-plasticisers etc. should be encouraged. The
proper use of additives and admixtures can help to produce durable, sound, well-
compacted concrete, while also promoting environmental sustainability.

7.3.2 Use of Self-Compacting Concrete (SCC) should invariably be preferred in situations


involving reinforcement congestion, and in slender sections (where homogeneous flow
of normal wet concrete would be difficult) (Fig. 1).

7.3.3 With the publication of IRC 83 Part 4 on Bearings new type of bearings have been
i t odu ed i I dia u de the a e “phe i al Bea i gs hi h a e ot o l oe
efficient in load transfer but also occupy less space on the pier cap. Their use should be
mandated in place of POT bearings (IRC 83 Part 2) where possible/appropriate.

7.3.4 Use of high performance concrete should be encouraged. The Indian Roads Congress is
expected to release the revised version of IRC: SP 70 publication in this respect soon. It
will include specifications for Self-Compacting Concrete. High performance concrete is
not restricted to high strength but includes a variety of concrete properties that may be
required to be possessed by concrete in the bridge structure. Concrete can be tailor-
made to fit particular set of properties in the fresh or service stage.

7.3.5 Structural Steel as per IS 2062 for grades up to 450 MPa yield strength, are presently
being manufactured in the country. Rolled sections with tapered flanges as per IS 8008,
which are freely available, have several disadvantages for bridge design such as limit of
section depth to 600 mm depth, weak resistance about vertical axis and difficulty in
affecting proper connections. Parallel flange sections as per IS 12778 should be
preferred as these are rolled to depths up to 900mm and do not have the other
disadvantages mentioned. Plates of thickness upto 50mm can be manufactured in India.

7.3.6 Connections with high strength friction grip bolts should be used, when welding is not
possible for the type of steel used or when connections have to be effected at site. In
steel constructions, the old techniques of using judgment while tightening bolts with
torque wrenches should be supplemented with the use of load-indicating washers (such
as “quirter ashe s that give a visual indication when bolts have been tightened to
their required tension.

7.3.7 The Committee feels that the domestic production of structural steel needs to increase
its capabilities to have larger sections and thicker plates that can be employed for large
span bridges (example depicted in Fig. 2). Also, there is a need to produce high quality
68
steel (including Grade E450 with yield strength of 450 MPa and thicker plates of Grade C
i a o da e ith I“ as ell as ) G ade i a o da e ith EN o
equivalent, whereby the strength in the thickness direction can be ensured). Structural
steel fabrication and erection are other areas where considerable upgradation is
essential.

7.3.8 Co osio esista t steel su h as eathe i g steel o Co te steel as pe I“ a


be usefully employed in structural steel bridges so that the need to periodically paint
them to protect from corrosion can be avoided. A patina is formed on the surface of
Corrosion resistant steel members, which prevents further corrosion. Use of such
materials would reduce the life–cycle cost of the structure. Also stainless steel
components should be encouraged in highly corrosive environments.

7.3.9 Corrosion Resistant Steel (CRS) bars, which have been manufactured with small
quantities of alloys, are reported to have a Corrosion Resistance Index (CRI), which is
the ratio of electrochemical impedance of CRS to that of normal steel and is a measure
of degree of additional resistance to corrosion, of 1.37. The tests were performed at the
CSIR-National Metallurgical Laboratory, Jamshedpur, in August of 2012. IS 1786 permits
addition of alloys like Cr, Cu, Ni, Mo and P in the manufacture provided the elements
either individually or in combination exceed 0.4% in total.

7.3.10 The Co ittee a e a oss ‘ead to Use ‘e a te h olog hi h offe s the


advantage of reduced wastage, improved quality, reduced inventory due to the
possi ilit of just i ti e deli e et . The Co ittee feels that the use of su h
technology should be encouraged.

7.3.11 Fibre-Reinforced Polymers (FRP) laminates and wraps are currently being used fairly
extensively in India for the repairs and rehabilitation of structures. These are no doubt
o de ate ials ha i g se e al ad a tages o e o e tio al te h i ues i a
circumstances. However, testing procedures of the materials, their mode of application,
as well as, the design procedures for strength and durability, employing such materials
should be undertaken immediately as research projects for Indian conditions. At the
moment reliance is being placed essentially on ACI 440 and FIB Bulletin 14. The
applicability of the provisions of these codes to Indian conditions needs to be
established through suitable applied research projects.

7.3.12 Bridge Structures of the future may gradually shift towards advanced light-weight
materials like Fibre-Reinforced Polymer (FRP) Composites. These materials are non-
corrosive and possess high strength but have the technical disadvantage of brittle
nature and commercial disadvantage of cost. Indigenous research for their
manufacturing process, introducing ductility characteristics in the Composites and
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design methodologies for structures are areas of great possibilities. At present the
technology is still in the experimental stage for full-scale vehicular bridges, though many
pedestrian and cycle bridges have been implemented in the last two decades.

7.3.13 Waterproofing of concrete decks, particularly when segmental construction is adopted,


is important as second line of defense because water may seep through the joints
between segments giving rise to corrosion of the prestressing steel. The material used
should be such that it can adhere to the deck and can withstand the temperature of the
bituminous wearing coat, which would be laid at temperatures of about 180 degrees
Celsius. The waterproofing systems could be bitumen mastic, bituminous membranes
not less than 3 mm thick or spray-applied polymer waterproofing membranes. The
waterproofing system in the latter case shall have a range of bond coats and be able to
demonstrate the durability of bond to asphaltic surfacing and sub strate such that the
wearing course can be removed and replaced during general maintenance without the
need to replace the waterproofing membrane and protection if any. More research
needs to be carried out to establish proper specifications for the combination of
waterproofing materials with the wearing coat.

7.3.14 Use of High Damping Rubber (HDR) bearings, which also acts as seismic isolators during
earthquakes, need to be introduced in India because they are simple to manufacture
and install as compared to sophisticated dampers and shock transmission units which
are presently being imported. Design codes and testing procedures for such bearings
are already available in some countries, as also, in Eurocodes.

7.4 Codes and Standards

7.4.1 With the publication of IRC 112 (Limit State Design method based on Eurocodes) and
other recent limit state design codes, our bridge codes are in tune with international
codes. However immediate attention is required on the following:

7.4.1.1 The Indian Roads Congress should develop and publish Special Publications and
Explanatory Handbooks to illustrate the provisions of some recent codes to ensure that
engineers understand the assumptions, implications and background of these clauses.
More frequent workshops as are being conducted by IABSE and other associations can
be very useful in rapid understanding of these code changes.

7.4.1.2 With the publication of recent codes (notably IRC 112) all the standard plans published
by IRC some years ago are out of date. These standard plans had formed the basis of
alternative designs in many cases when the authorities/contractors did not wish to
appoint their own design consultants. The Committee recommends the revision of

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standard plans to conform to the current codes so as to enable them to be adopted for
bridge designs.

7.4.1.3 The IRC codes are not in sync with each other as there are some serious conflicting
provisions in the various codes. The Indian Roads Congress should take measures to
remove such anomalies on priority. Two committees should be constituted one for
bridges and one for roads under the Chairmanship of knowledgeable Engineers. The
Chairmen will call meetings of the conveners of various code committees to identify
such conflicting provisions and rectify the situation urgently.

7.4.1.4 Provisions on some important aspects of design such as those relating to precast
segmental construction in IRC 112 need to be introduced, as this construction
methodology is fast becoming a frequently adopted technique of bridge construction
in India.

7.4.1.5 Some codes (notably IRC 78) dealing with foundation design need to be updated to limit
state design philosophy as soon as possible.

7.4.1.6 Bridges in India are being designed for earthquake resistance using three different codes,
namely, Indian Roads Congress (IRC), Indian Railway Standards (IRS), and Bureau of
Indian Standards (BIS) codes. This is contrary to good practice. An apex body should be
formed with representatives from the three organizations to streamline the
differences and a single set of parameters can be evolved.

7.4.2 The IRC Codes on Design of Bearings (IRC 83 Parts 1,2and3) have undergone a complete
change so as to be in line with Eurocodes. However, an important provision relating to
design under seismic load combinations relating to the use of elastomeric bearings (Part
2) for transmitting lateral forces is missing which should be introduced without delay.

7.4.3 The IRC codes are being made on voluntary basis, which currently takes considerable
time and no accountability can be fixed. In most advanced economies, the drafting of
portions of each code is assigned to experienced consultants and academicians on
payment basis. The Committee recommends adoption of same procedure in India, and
suggests the following:

7.4.3.1 All the important codes should also have explanatory handbooks that provide details
about appropriate application of the various clauses supplemented by solved examples
by way of illustrations wherever required.

7.4.3.2 The drafting of codes/ explanatory handbooks etc. should be entrusted to expert
consultants/ academicians on payment basis.
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7.4.3.3 The expenses incurred by expert members towards participation in code committee
meetings should be borne by the Indian Roads Congress and paid/ reimbursed
promptly. The Convener of the code committee should be authorized to approve mode
of travel for members and to sanction other incidental expenses. Reasonable budget
for meeting of these expenses should be provided to the Convener of the code
committee.

7.4.3.4 The Ministry should make a separate dedicated fund available to IRC to meet the above
requirements.

7.4.3.5 Presently, the IRC codes and guidelines are not available for online purchase of soft
copies. The IRC should set up online purchase facility and further consider setting up
annual charges as well as charges based on number of pages down-loaded for online
purchase. A similar practice has already been adopted by Bureau of Indian Standards
for online purchase of IS codes.

7.5 Economy

7.5.1 Selection of span arrangements and optimizing the total cost of superstructure in
relation to substructure and foundations are important elements that lead to overall
economy of the structure.

7.5.2 The design and construction of bridges is inextricably interlinked. The methodology and
sequence of construction should be decided at the concept stage and detailed at the
desig stage. It is ell said: You a ot desig ithout k o i g ho the idge is goi g
to e o st u ted .

7.5.3 Repetition of shapes and sizes of elements reduces costs and therefore standardization
is a key element in the economical design and construction of bridges.

7.5.4 Increasing embankment lengths and reducing stilted portions results in economy (Fig.3).
However, in respect of flyovers and bridges in urban areas, the minimum clear height at
the abutment should be retained at about 3 m to permit U-turns of smaller vehicles and
also to avoid unsightly walls of long length and large heights, which can otherwise divide
the area into two parts (Fig. 4).

7.6 Aesthetics

7.6.1 Special attention should be paid to aesthetics in bridge construction. The design life of
bridge construction is 100 years and what we build today would last for generations.
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Bridges are amongst the largest and most visible man-made structures. The form and
surface finishes, both play a part in the overall appearance of the structure. Slim
structures, keeping in mind the scale and proportion in relation to the surroundings and
of different parts of the same structure contribute to its aesthetics.

7.6.2 Important decisions at the concept stage are made not only regarding functionality and
safety but also of aesthetics.

7.6.3 The arch is an efficient structural form that is inherently aesthetic. Arch bridges which
were difficult and precarious to construct on ground supported staging till a couple of
decades ago are now possible with newer technologies such as cantilever construction
using temporary suspension cables (Fig. 5). Construction of arch bridges where they fit
into the landscape or urban environment need to be encouraged (Fig .6).

7.6.4 Medium span bridges in the form of extradosed bridges (Fig. 7) need to be encouraged
as they enhance aesthetics without much additional cost in the span range 75m to
150m. The world record stands at 275m (Japan) and 280m ( Korea ) for such bridges.
Long span structures like cable stayed bridges (Fig. 8) where required functionally, i.e.,
long span, or to provide a landmark which is visible (Fig. 9) from a long distance need to
be encouraged where necessary. The world record stands at 1104m (Russia) and 1111m
( Korea ) for such bridges.

7.7 Superstructure

7.7.1 Continuous and/ or jointless bridges (Fig. 10), which require minimum bearings and
expansion joints, should be encouraged as they are more durable and more aesthetic.
Additionally, they involve less inspection and maintenance and are also less susceptible
to vandal attacks. Above all, they facilitate better riding comfort. With a view to derive
the above referred advantages, the Committee recommends that such bridges should
be considered in preference unless there are special situations which do not favour
adoption of such bridges (e.g. yielding type of strata susceptible to large differential
settlements etc.)

7.7.2 The Committee recommends that ground supported staging should be avoided as far as
possible, with a view to ensure safety during construction and prevent inconvenience to
traffic. Precast segmental construction (Fig. 11) is a popular technique in India and can
be adopted economically, in situations where the number of segments to be cast
increases beyond, say 250-300, defraying the expense of setting up the infrastructure
required to carry out this type of construction. Use of other techniques such as precast
girder-slab construction (Fig. 12), Incremental launching (Fig. 13), composite

73
construction (Fig. 14.), or full span launching (Fig. 15 & 16) can be deployed to obviate
the need of ground-supported staging.

7.7.3 For wide decks (greater than 15m), single cell box girders with struts supporting the tips
of the deck cantilevers (Fig. 17) or breaking the deck span by introducing internal struts
(Fig. 18) are useful tools that can obviate the necessity of multi-cell box girders which
are more difficult to construct. Such design geometry should be encouraged in design
of wide deck bridges.

7.7.4 Use of precasting offers the advantage of assured superior quality and minimizes
construction operations at site and hence should be strongly encouraged for
superstructure construction.

7.7.5 It is obvious that precast construction offers the advantage of assured quality through
factory like casting process. One of the important measures to improve quality and
increase the speed of construction is the adoption of standardized factory made precast
products such as girders, slabs, etc. for bridges (Fig. 19). Exemption of excise duty on
such products will encourage deployment of such bridge technologies on large scale.
The Committee recommends preferential adoption of this approach for construction of
idges o the Natio al High a s. The Co ittee s e o e datio s o this aspe t
are covered separately in the Paragraph 7.8 below.

7.7.6 Steel and steel-concrete composite bridges (Fig. 14 and 20) can be advantageously used
in many instances. ROBs (Fig. 21) are one example where Indian Railways have clear
preference for such bridges because of reduced block time for train movements during
their construction.

7.7.7 Pedestrian bridges across highways, with no support at median verge of the highway
(Fig. 6 and 22) are excellent examples of safe and aesthetic bridges when the selected
bridge form is the arch, which can readily span upto 90-100m economically and without
difficulty. The Committee recommends adoption of this approach for construction of
pedestrian bridges especially in urban areas where adequate pier protection in the
median is considered to be difficult.

7.7.8 Long bridges over perennial water re ui e spe ial te h i ue fo o st u tio . E d-o
construction (Fig. 23) and large bridge segments floated into position and erected by
floating cranes (Fig. 24) are some of the special techniques that should be considered
before finalizing the actual technique for such bridges.

7.7.9 Bridges in hilly regions over rivers/streams require types of bridges that can be
constructed without ground-supported staging. A three span continuous structure with
74
a large central span constructed by cast in situ cantilever construction is a good option
for modest lengths. The side spans can be made short so that the piers can remain
outside the stream and are easier to construct. Cast in situ cantilevers require very little
space behind the abutments (Fig. 25). The option of a single span steel truss is always
open if enough space for its assembly and launching is available behind the abutment
(Fig. 26).

7.8 Pre-casting of Sections in Factories

7.8.1 The vast national highway network in India has a large number of bridges, and it is seen
on an average that one comes across the presence of a major bridge after every 3 km.
Besides this, there are a huge number of small and medium bridges (probably in excess
of 10 lakhs). Upgradation of highways to better standards will lead to necessity of very
large quantum of bridge works of various sizes to be carried out at a very fast pace.

7.8.2 These bridges are generally in spans from 6 meters to 40 meters and in a few locations
up to 45 meters. The structural arrangement for these structures range from simple slab
type structures to girder and slab type of structures, unless the bridges are of
sufficiently longer length. The number of box girder type of bridges is relatively small.

7.8.3 The typical process of design and construction is as follows.

7.8.3.1 These bridges are currently designed and also constructed in varied manner. With the
arrival of new construction organizations in almost all geographical locations, the
variation and the methodologies are also increasing. This is also leading to delays in
realization of the projects.

7.8.3.2 With every contractor carrying out his own designs and mobilizing the bridge-casting
infrastructure in the form of enabling works, manpower, quality control systems,
concrete production facility, and the projects see unnecessary duplication of facilities.
The economy of large-scale production set up is not realized and there is great loss of
efficiency.

7.8.3.3 The site-by-site or even project-by-project casting setup is inherently slow and a
standardized production of bridge components in common factory like setup will
reduce every project timeline by at least 2 months (this is currently required for
mobilization of casting set ups in every project). The current practice of site-by-site or
project-by-project casting yard is necessitated by the imposition of excise duty on
factory-made precast concrete products. As discussed in Section 7.7.5, abolition of
such excise duty will provide the enabling environment to eliminate these wasteful
practices. It will make it possible to avail of better quality products on bridge projects.
75
Moreover, over at least 99% of the produce of such plants is going to be used on
Government projects.

7.8.3.4 The manpower necessity for precasting will also be reduced with the precasting
factories. The projects can commence construction earlier with reduced mobilization
times leading to early realization of the projects. This will also be helpful in improving
quality and durability of the structure.

7.8.4 Current International Practices

7.8.4.1 Internationally the practice for the design and construction of these types of bridges is
varied. The practice in USA is to fix the span configuration and thereafter choose a
predesigned girder and slab section, which are then ordered from factories that are
specialized in the casting and delivery of these precast girders. This practice is
generally adopted for medium spans upto 50 m. Superstructure of very smaller spans
are generally cast in place.

7.8.4.2 The practice in UK is somewhat different in that the standard sections are available to
cover spans as small as 6 meters and as long as 45 meters. These are standardized into
Reinforced concrete, Pre-tensioned sections and Post-tensioned sections. Standard
sections are also available in Box-type sections that enable longer spans conveniently.

7.8.5 Recommendations

7.8.5.1 In the light of the international practices, with a view to improve quality, durability and
speed of works as well as to reduce costs, the Committee recommends the following

7.8.6 Pre-casting factories should be encouraged to be set up in all major states. Precast
products from such factories e.g. girders, box structures for culverts etc. can be used for
construction of various highway structures. Standard designs of these standard
components can be got approved from MORTH for use in bridges, cross drainage
structures etc., so that further design checks during construction may not be needed. A
scheme for approval of design from MORTH after paying the necessary charges should
be established. If these approved designs are used, then there should be no further
scrutiny of structural design by either Independent Engineer or authority.

7.8.6.1 Exemption may be provided from Excise duty for these factories in order to not increase
the cost of the projects. In any case the precasting facilities specific to a project are
exempt from Excise duty, hence there would be no loss of revenue to the Government
anyway.

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7.8.6.2 Standardized sections may be developed in order to achieve uniformity, economy and
speed. Standardization also leads to reduction of errors in both design and
construction.

7.9 Pile Foundations

7.9.1 Currently piles constructed in the country, in general, use pile diameters upto 1.5m. The
committee recommends deployment of large diameter piles such as 2.0 m/ 2.5m (or
larger diameters) for speedy and reliable construction. Such piles should be examined
for adoption as alternative to well foundations.

7.9.2 The committee recommends the use of mono piles (Fig. 27) with large diameter piles
(2.0 m and above) where appropriate. The possibility of extending the mono pile above
ground to make the pier should be explored, where possible, as this would eliminate the
necessity of a pile cap, which is essential to enable load transfer from the pier to the
piles below.

7.9.3 Use of low strain (Integrity testing) and high strain testing after proper calibration and
Ultrasonic Pulse Velocity (UPV) tests through pre-installed tubes (Fig. 28) for larger
diameter piles should be mandatory to ensure soundness of concrete in piles.

7.9.4 Use of advanced piling equipment which are now available (with the capability to carry
out boring into hard rock and which make it possible to install large diameter deep
foundations in such strata) should be encouraged in preference to well foundations
which are not suitable for sinking in such strata.

7.10 Well/ Caisson Foundations

7.10.1 The Indian construction industry is well acquainted with the design and construction of
well foundations for generations. The quality of concrete in well foundations is readily
ensured because concreting is done before the well is sunk below the ground (Fig. 29).
On the other hand, cast in situ bored piles are installed by sending down concrete in the
bored hole by tremmie and require Non Destructive Tests to assess the quality of
concrete. In recent times in many instances pile foundations have been preferred over
well foundations due to ease of their installation.

7.10.2 Well Foundations, where used, should preferably be installed with Jack-down
techniques (Fig. 30) which can improve speed of construction, reduce steining thickness
and result in better control during well-sinking operations.

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7.11 Consultants

7.11.1 Most major professions such as Architects, Doctors, Chartered Accountants, and
Lawyers are governed by statutory bodies established under different Acts of
Parliament. The Engineering profession does not have a statutory body to regulate it as
of o . This eeds to e add essed th ough the E gi ee s Bill. This issue has also ee
efe ed i the Chapte . The Co ittee a e a oss a sa ple d aft of the E gi ee s
Bill prepared by a professional body which is attached for reference at Annexure 7.1.

7.11.2 Selection of consultants is particularly important for large and/or complex bridges and
has to be done with utmost care because the safety, performance and durability are
largely dependent on the caliber of the design consultant. The process of selecting the
lowest bidder from cost consideration alone should be done away since this is not the
correct approach to appoint professionals. The Committee feels that QCBS method of
selection of consultants, which identifies the lowest bidder from a combination of cost
and quality considerations, should be generally followed. This matter has also been
covered in Chapter 3.

7.11.3 A Design Basis Report relevant to the project should be made by the designer and
approved by the authority before proceeding with the detailed design. This would
clarify several issues that later become a matter of dispute with Independent Consultant
or proof consultants at a later stage.

7.11.4 All major projects require the appointment of an independent proof check consultant.
The Committee was informed that a standard document towards proof consultancy was
not available. The Committee was informed that document dealing with Liability of
Structural Engineers is also not available. Sample reference documents in respect of the
former and the latter are placed at Annexures 7.2 and 7.3, respectively. These can also
be downloaded from the internet.

7.11.5 Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) for design issues is available in India. The terms of
the PII should be fixed before appointment of Consultants.

7.12 Miscellaneous

7.12.1 Cross drainage and Animals Crossings are required to be provided at frequent intervals
along highway construction. The Committee recommends that such crossings should be
provided at about 500 m. so that a crossing is available in a distance of 250 m from any
point. Crossings for smaller vehicles are also required to be provided at some places.

78
7.12.2 Innovative technologies, such as proprietary Corrugated Steel Plate (CSP) Arches (Fig.
31) offer an excellent and speedy alternative for these applications and the Committee
recommends that it should be considered for adoption. Use of galvanized steel and/or
protective coating is recommended to avoid corrosion and prolong the design life.

7.12.3 Use of Precast thin concrete arch (Fig. 32) is another good alternative for cross drainage
works.

7.12.4 For precast thin concrete arches as well as corrugated steel plate arches, the economy is
derived on account of soil structure interaction. Several experiments have been carried
out regarding the degree of relief based on soil and other properties and the design
procedure developed accordingly. These relations can be used for the purpose of design
of these structures.

7.12.5 Safety and security during construction needs special attention as most accidents,
collapses and casualties happen at this stage. The design as well as construction
procedures should be proof checked not only of the structure at the service stage but
also during construction stage when the structure, being partially complete, is at its
most vulnerable stage.

7.12.6 Long circuitous road lengths, many times going up and down can be avoided especially
in hilly sections by increased use of viaducts hopping across valleys and is
recommended since it increases road safety and decreases road lengths.

7.13 Accelerated Bridge Construction (ABC)

7.13.1 The concept of bridge design and construction is rapidly evolving due to advancements
in new materials, design process, construction procedure, high-capacity materials and
new management methods. These advancements have led to the development of
Accelerated Bridge Construction (ABC) techniques. The key feature of ABC is significant
reduction in onsite construction time and is contributing to a paradigm shift in the
design, construction and maintenance of bridges.

7.13.2 The key features which are as follows, to reduce on site construction time of bridges:

 Innovative planning,
 Innovative design,
 Innovative materials, and
 Innovative construction methods.

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7.13.3 An important innovation used in ABC is our ability to manufacture bridge assemblies and
erect them into their final position under a variety of constraints. This provides the
ability to carry out construction of sub-components in controlled environment and
assemble them into their final `position. Compared to conventional structural design,
the design principles of bridge components in ABC are not different since they are based
on the same principles of mechanics. However, ABC construction may affect the choice
of materials, joints, segments, slabs and construction methodology. The adoption of
ABC may therefore be considered as a further advancement of performance
expectation during the project execution stage and the Committee feels that it should
be strongly encouraged.

7.13.4 Extensive use of manufactured components in ABC furthers the concept of


prefabricated constructions wherein components and, where applicable, their assembly
are produced in controlled factory environment and then transported to place in their
final location. Size and weight considerations generally preclude the production of fully
assembled prefabricated bridge in the factory. However, major components such as
foundation, substructure and superstructure can be produced in the factory and
connected to each other at the final location.

7.13.5 A common problem in conventional bridge construction, particularly in urban areas,


areas with heavy traffic or where roads are narrow is the accompanying traffic jams,
loss of working hours by travelling public, fuel burnt and increase of pollution in traffic
jams, loss of productivity of contractor due to inadequate working space, etc. These
result in tremendous inconvenience. The problems also lead to economic and
environmental burden on the public that is not typically reflected in the project cost.
These may also jeopardize the health of construction workers and the travelling public
due to increase in pollution and work-related accidents. These problems can be
substantially overcome by adopting Accelerated Bridge Construction practices. The ABC
improves Site constructability, Total project delivery time, Material quality and Product
durability, and Work-zone safety of travelling public and construction workers.

7.13.6 The advantages of using ABC over conventional bridge constructions often cannot be
measured using traditional cost-benefit metrics, which are heavily biased towards initial
construction cost (or contract value) rather than life-cycle cost. Most infrastructure
projects also typically consider only the tender cost and do not include the cost to public
or the cost to economy. In ABC, the initial decisions regarding alignment, structural
systems, components, materials of construction and construction methodology are
based not just on the initial construction cost but also factor such as speed of
construction and other benefits elaborated under 7.13.4, i.e. to avoid traffic jams, loss
of working hours to public, etc. Often, the initial cost when using ABC may be higher
when compared to the cost using conventional construction techniques. However, the
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additional cost of ABC is justified due to the advantages that ABC provides over
conventional construction techniques. The owner can decide on adoption of ABC based
on these advantages.

7.13.7 The most common factors that are considered to evaluate the relative benefit of
adopting ABC when compared to conventional construction technique are On site
construction time, Mobility impact time (time during which the traffic is at least partially
obstructed), Least nuisance to public caused due to construction activity, etc.

7.13.8 There are a number of innovations that are typically adopted in ABC projects. These
innovations enable economical constructions that are fast, durable and aesthetically
pleasing. Some of the important innovative concepts are given below.

7.13.8.1 Innovative bridge construction/launch systems. The emphasis of rapid


construction and greater mechanization results in the use of innovative bridge
concepts. Innovative launch systems that provide the ability to construct
highly innovating systems provide life-cycle cost advantage.

7.13.8.2 Innovative precast bridge deck systems. This tends to greatly improve the
speed of construction while simultaneously improving quality and reducing
cost.

7.13.8.3 Alternative technical concepts and designs. Under this innovation, contractors
are permitted to propose alternate designs, similar to value engineering,
intended to reduce cost and time.

7.13.8.4 High friction surfaces. This measure adds a high-friction surface at curves
thereby significantly reducing potential for accidents. The additional cost due
to adoption of high-friction surface is generally a small fraction of the total
project cost.

7.13.8.5 Innovative materials of construction. In addition to high-performance concrete


(both reinforced and prestressed) and steel, the ABC can also take advantage
of innovative joints, overlays, etc.

7.13.8.6 Greater team coordination. The adoption of design-build system and emphasis
on reduction in construction time forces the client, contractors and others to
improve coordination and work as a team. Some important advantages of the
improvement in team coordination include early resolution of differences,
quicker decision-making by all stakeholders, greater understanding by the
stakeholders regarding their role or responsibilities to meet the project

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timeline, etc. These coordination issues are also widely recognized as an
essential requirement for good quality of the project.

7.13.9 The alternatives that can be adopted under ABC framework are given in table below.

Type Latest Method Older Method


Deck slab Precast panels, reinforced or Reinforced concrete
prestressed; fibre-reinforced plastic deck slab;
panels Open steel grid deck or
filled with concrete;
These can be used for both new
constructions in concrete and steel
as well as for repair and
rehabilitation of existing bridges.
The use of these can greatly reduce
the construction time of bridges
since deck slab is often a critical path
activity.

Concrete Precast prestressed girders; Reinforced or


girders Box girders; prestressed girders;
Segmental girders; etc. using high- Cast-in-situ box girders
performance materials.

The use of these concrete girder


systems provides the opportunity to
carry out most construction
activities in casting yards in
controlled environment resulting in
faster construction and improved
quality.

Steel girders High strength steel. Ordinary strength steel

These can be used for longer span


bridges reducing onsite construction
activities, improve aesthetics and
reduce weight. The speed of
construction can also be increased
when high strength steel members

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Type Latest Method Older Method
are used.

Bearings Multi-rotational; Rocker and roller type


Seismic isolation bearings. bearings

Use of these special bearings can


enhance the overall safety of
bridges. In high seismic zones, the
use of seismic isolation can improve
performance and drastically reduce
or eliminate the time required to
restart traffic after an earthquake.

Piers Frames; Columns bends; Pile-piers Reinforced concrete


(pile bents) walls; steel frames;

The designs are more economical


with additional advantage of
reduction in onsite construction
activities when the modern pier
concepts are used. The speed of
construction can also be greatly
enhanced by using these systems.

Abutments Spill through; integral; semi integral; Gravity-type reinforced


Mechanically Stabilised Earth walls. concrete; cantilever
walls
The use of these abutments can
reduce forces, increase construction
speed and bring about overall
economy compared to conventional
techniques.

Wing walls Reinforced concrete; tie-back walls Masonry or reinforced


and retaining concrete walls.
walls

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7.13.10Although a relatively new concept, there is considerable international experience with
adoption of Accelerated Bridge Construction principles. A number of examples of use of
ABC could be found in international and Indian projects.

7.13.11The following recommendations are made regarding adoption of Accelerated Bridge


Construction.

7.13.11.1 Accelerated Bridge Construction should be strongly considered for all


bridge, flyover or viaduct construction projects at locations with traffic
congestion. It should be the preferred technology for all national highway
stretches that experience high-volume traffic.

7.13.11.2 Accelerated bridge construction should be made mandatory in all projects


where the reduction in traffic capacity due to bridge construction activities is
greater than 33% of the pre-construction capacity in high traffic volume roads
and where adoption of this technology would be eminently suitable. The ABC
approach should aim to optimize the combined benefit of cost of construction,
onsite construction time and mobility impact time (which is the period of time
when the total traffic capacity of the network is reduced due to construction).

7.13.11.3 In other bridge construction projects in urban areas, where the reduction
in traffic capacity due to bridge construction activities is greater than 25% of
the pre-construction capacity, use of precast concrete superstructure or
factory-produced steel superstructure should be made mandatory. The
superstructure may consist of full-span members or segmentally connected
members. The project execution should aim to reduce onsite construction
time and improve quality of construction due to the superstructure members
being produced in controlled environment. The adoption of other concepts of
ABC for bearings, substructure and foundation should be strongly encouraged.

7.13.11.4 Even in all other bridge construction projects in urban areas not covered
under 7.13.9.2 and 7.13.9.3, where the reduction in traffic capacity due to
bridge construction activities is less than 25% of the pre-construction capacity,
use of precast concrete superstructure or factory-produced steel
superstructure should be strongly encouraged. The superstructure may
consist of full-span members or segmentally connected members. The project
execution should aim to reduce onsite construction time and improve quality
of construction due to the superstructure members being produced in
controlled environment.

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7.13.11.5 In all routine bridge projects in national highway stretches that do not
require traffic restrictions, such as in stretches that are located away from
urban areas, it should be mandatory to use precast standardized factory
produced concrete members or prefabricated standardized factory produced
steel members for superstructure. Preference should be given to the use of
full-length prefabricated superstructure segments. The use of these products
will help to improve the quality and durability, improve speed of execution
and also enhance worksite safety.

7.13.11.6 As a planning guideline, it is recommended that the ABC projects in areas


of traffic congestion should be planned such that mobility impact time (time
during which the traffic is at least partially obstructed) is substantially reduced
through adoption of ABC approach over conventional bridge construction
approach. A higher project cost compared to conventional construction cost
can be justified based on reduction in mobility impact time, which reduces
economic impact of congestion and thereby also lessens the adverse
environmental impact from congestion-related pollution.

7.13.11.7 As a planning guideline, it should further be required that the total


execution time (including preparatory time) when using ABC approach should
be substantially less compared to the total execution time using conventional
construction approach. This will help to ensure that the overall impact of
construction, such as on traffic and environment is considerably reduced by
the adoption of ABC approach.

7.13.11.8 Bridge construction projects should make extensive use of precast


structural members of standard sizes, which can be factory produced under
controlled environment in large quantities. This will help to improve quality,
durability and comfort. At the same time, the implementation of stringent
quality control requirements, which is only feasible in controlled factory
environment and not in field casting yards, is expected to bring economy in
life cycle cost.

7.13.11.9 The design of certain commonly required members for ABC projects, such
as precast prestressed I and T girders, precast prestressed segmental box
girders and precast slabs should be prepared for typical carriageway
configurations and span arrangements. This has also been covered in
paragraph 7.8 above.

7.13.11.10 Typical contract conditions should be modified where required, to


encourage alternate design of bridges with particular reference to
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Accelerated Bridge Constructions. The contract conditions should prescribe
requirements for speedy review, approval and execution of ABC designs.
Since ABC typically requires large investment in construction equipment, the
same should also be factored in the terms and conditions of contract so that
larger mobilization or equipment advances are provided. A strong incentive
package will further help meet the objectives of ABC. Government also has to
play a major role in giving required facilities such as land for casting yard,
labour camp, quick power connections, setting up high power
interdepartmental coordination committee to address administrative issues,
etc.

7.13.11.11 On 4th Ma h , Ho le P i e Mi iste of I dia has lau hed “etu


Bha ata p og a of Mi ist of ‘oad T a spo t& High a s to e su e
elimination of Railway Level Crossings on National Highways by 2019. The
program is aimed at replacement of all the Railway Level Crossings on
National Highways by ROBs/RUBs and replacement/widening/strengthening
of weak and narrow bridges in order to ensure safe and smooth flow of traffic.
Under this program, a total number of 208 Railway Level Crossings, which are
not falling under any other programme like NHDP etc., are to be replaced by
constructing ROBs/RUBs in a time bound manner at an estimated cost of Rs.
20,800 crores. In addition to this, approximately 1,500 bridges are to be
epla ed/ ide ed/st e gthe ed at a ost of ‘s. , o es. Ho le
Railway Minister in his budget speech of 2015-16, has also announced a
proposal to eliminate 3,438 level crossings. Of these, 970 ROBs and RUBs are
to be taken up during 2016-17 itself.

7.13.11.12 Such a large-scale construction of ROBs is a very ambitious project, and


noting the large number of structures, the following suggestions are made:

a) Railways do not permit concrete girders on railway span and


require only steel girders. However, it is noted that due to
construction of several metro projects as well as several bridges
where precast girders have been used, very good, safe and
efficient launching systems are readily available. The use of
precast concrete girders, that is produced in controlled
environment and hence of assured quality should be permitted. If
required, the Railways may evolve the criteria for empanelment
of agencies that own good launching system and prequalify them.
The Railways may also make it mandatory for the ROB contractor
to only engage one of the empanelled agencies for launching of
girders. By insisting on only Steel Composite girder as an
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alternative to precast prestresseed girders the cost of an ROB is
increased very substantially and nationally could amount to
hundreds of crores. .

b) The Railways currently insist that the ROB should span the entire
land owned by them, and not just the span required for tracks.
Particularly, near the existing level crossing, the Railways own
60m land to accommodate signal man quarters, etc. In such cases
also they insist on construction of ROB spanning the entire 60m.
It is noted that as per their circular, 24m span is adequate for four
tracks. It is strongly recommended that the span of the ROB
should be kept limited to the span required for tracks. It is well
known that even if there is need of future tracks, the same can be
provided by creating opening in the abutment by using box
pushing technology. Reduction in span of the ROB segments will
bring considerable economy in the project cost and also result in
faster construction.

c) The RDSO has prepared standard structural designs for various


spans to accommodate two tracks, four tracks and six tracks. In
the RDSO standard designs, stiffeners are not provided in the
steel plate girder webs, resulting in increase in web plate
thickness compared to the thickness required from load
consideration. This increases the quantity of structural steel and
leads to considerable increase in cost of the structure. It is
strongly recommended that for factory-produced steel girders,
the use of stiffener plate may be permitted since these would be
welded in controlled working environment in a factory and thus
their quality can be assured. As an alternate to welding, stiffeners
may be provided using friction bolt or riveting as permitted by IS
800 in order to meet the design requirement. The use of lower
thickness of web plate can bring considerable reduction in the
cost and thus economy in the project without compromising
quality. It is estimated that the saving could run to hundreds of
crores nationally.

d) In case of doubts in adoption of bolted and riveted connections for


stiffener in ROB design as an alternative to welding, as already
permitted by IS 800, the effectiveness of these connections may
be taken up as a research project to be funded by MORTH.

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7.13.11.13 Over the next 30 years, I dia ill p o ide o e of o ld s la gest usi ess
opportunity for road and bridge construction. This provides tremendous
opportunity for innovation, new paradigms in construction and consideration
of economy and sustainability through adoption of approaches such as ABC.
India can emerge as the world leader in technology and business in this field.
However, the Committee recommends that expenditure in basic and applied
research related to roads and bridges should be significantly scaled up. The
Committee also recommends that global best practices in research and
development management should be adopted.

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Figures

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95
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100
101
102
103
104
105
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8. RESEARCH IN HIGHWAYS SECTOR
8.1 Importance of Research

8.1.1 The importance of research and development in field of evolution of technology is well
known. The Committee was conscious of the fact that construction industry in India in
general and the roads and bridge construction industry in particular, has been unable to
keep pa e ith the eeds of the atio s apidl e pa di g e o omic growth due
largely to inadequate base of research and development in India in this field. The
research and development landscape can be broadly categorized into three verticals: (a)
Basic research, (b) Applied research, and (c) Proof-of-concept or field demonstration. An
important prerequisite for taking up sustained research and development under the
second and third verticals is the necessity of having strong foundation of basic research
expertise.

8.1.2 The traditional national research funding agencies typically focus on supporting research
under the first vertical. Here, the output is in terms of peer-reviewed publications and it
is seen that Indian researchers publish a large number of such papers every year. A
research ecosystem therefore already exists in the country to carry out high-quality
basic research. This ecosystem needs to be further strengthened to increase the
number of capable researchers in the country through participation of more number of
institutions, faculty and doctoral students. Additional funds for basic research relevant
to roads and bridges will be essential to nurture and sustain research expertise and
develop high quality human resources to address current and future challenges.

8.1.3 The second category of research is the most critical for developing technological
leadership in the industry so that a pipeline of new products, processes and
technologies relevant to the roads and bridges industry can flourish. The applied
research is also typically nurtured in the same ecosystem as basic research, and often
the same experts are engaged in both basic and applied research. Broadly, the applied
research is based on results of basic research for its potential applications e.g. in
enhancing performance of existing products and processes, development of new
materials with better performance, etc. Examples of applied research with relevance to
India include development of improved asphalts, development of new technologies for
road and bridge construction, development of environmentally-friendly materials and
construction techniques, structural materials, systems and processes for rapid
construction, development of more durable roads and bridges, etc. The outcome of
applied research is generally measured in terms of patents, technology transfers,
formation of new companies with specialized knowledge, etc. in addition to peer-
reviewed publications. In India, applied research is at a much lower level than the

107
atio s e ui e e ts he o pa ed to asi esea h. The a ou t of fu ds a aila le
for applied research is also meager. There is need to considerably increase the quantum
of applied research in our institutions. In line with global practices, most applied
research is carried out in academic institutions and research laboratories. The expertise
and interest of the industry in applied research should also be leveraged by providing
suitable opportunities for them to participate in research projects in partnership with
academic institutions and research laboratories.

8.1.4 Proof of concept or technology demonstration projects are generally undertaken as the
thi d e ti al of esea h a d de elop e t. These a e ai l i te ded to field test
the technologies developed through applied research in India or abroad. In the context
of Indian roads and bridges, field testing projects are also necessary for technologies
that are developed in other countries under different loads and environmental
conditions and their suitability in India need to be assessed. Adaptation of technologies
and incremental improvement of existing technologies are also undertaken through
programs under this vertical. Conventionally, most proof of concept and field
demonstration projects are taken up by industries engaged in the business since they
have the best understanding of the field conditions and also have the means to conduct
large-scale field implementation of the technology or product under consideration. This
stage of research and development is generally carried out under the lead of companies
or research laboratories with the infrastructure and facilities to undertake such large-
scale activities. The academic institutions may also be partners for these projects. Since
only some of the technologies that reach the stage of proof-of-concept of field
demonstration are finally taken forward for induction in professional practice, the
support for carrying out these research projects are also generally provided from
government grants with suitable co-funding from the industry partners likely to draw
benefit from the project. There is need to provide generous funding from the
government and to establish partnership terms and conditions for participation from
the industry to undertake such projects.

8.2 Strengthening of Research Facilities & Infrastructure

8.2.1 The Committee was informed that, except for a handful of academic institutions such as
leading IITs, most institutions do not have adequately equipped teaching laboratories
on subjects such as pavement engineering, concrete technology, etc. The Committee
noted that the students studying in these institutions do not get the opportunity of
hands-on training on modern concepts and techniques in these topics. The Committee
therefore feels that, in order to increase the quality of manpower entering the
workforce in this field, it is desirable to provide leading academic institutions that do
not have adequately-equipped laboratories with financial grant to set up such
laboratories. The Committee feels that an amount of Rs. 3-4 crore to each selected
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academic institution may be adequate for upgrading the laboratories during the next 3
years.

8.2.2 The development of innovative products and technologies requires access to advanced
laboratories and testing facilities. Such facilities require major one-time investment to
provide state-of-the-art equipment for validating the products and technologies. The
laboratories also require recurring investment to qualify the equipment as per
international benchmark at regular intervals and to upgrade them to meet the needs of
technology development. The Committee noted that in India, such well-equipped
laboratories have not yet been established. It was also noted that in several countries,
such laboratories are established in academic and/or research institutions so that their
funding can be provided through government grants. The Committee also feels that
such facilities that are required for development and/or validation of products and
technologies that are relevant to the roads and bridges should be established through
funding from MORTH. These laboratories will go a long way to strengthen the research
infrastructure in the country. These laboratories can also play a crucial role in
development of new technologies as well as validating products and technologies in use
in other parts of the world.

8.3 Selection of Research Projects

8.3.1 India has a large talent pool of highly qualified specialists in our academic institutions,
research laboratories and in the industry. The research programs undertaken through
funding from MORTH need to possess the necessary mechanisms for their participation
to address our research needs. It is also necessary to provide the facility to attract new
talent to carry out high quality research and development over long term. Globally, it is
found that research programs where the decision to grant funding is based on peer
review of quality of research proposals provide the most equitable mechanism to
identify talented subject matter experts for carrying out research and development. The
project proposals in this system are received in response to open calls for proposal,
which may be issued several times a year. A transparent mechanism to carry out peer
review of project proposals and decide on projects for funding will also be required to
be established. Some ministries that routinely support research and development, such
as Science and Engineering Research Board, Department of Science and Technology,
Department of Biotechnology, Department of Earth Sciences, etc. have already
established similar mechanisms within their domain of activities. The best practices
from their model may be adopted to establish a similar mechanism under MORTH for
taking up research and development projects that will be funded by the ministry.

8.3.2 With increasing complexity of research needs, major research projects often require
multi-disciplinary team of experts to undertake the project. Such projects may also
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require collaboration between more than one partner institutions. These research
programs may be set up as thematic research centres whose proposals may be solicited
through calls from academic institutions and research laboratories. Several successful
models by other ministries are available where funding of research centres has
facilitated the development of important technologies in India or helped to establish a
critical mass of research expertise that is required in certain topics of national interest.

8.4 Research Funding

8.4.1 The Committee feels that annual research funding provided by MORTH should be at
least equal Rs. 150-200 crore. The projects to be supported should be judiciously
selected based on the priorities of research identified by the ministry and the quality of
the proposal. The process of selection of the research projects should follow the
principles enumerated in this report.

8.4.2 The availability of research funding as recommended here does not imply mandatory
expenditure unless the project proposals meet the requirement. About Rs. 30-40 crore
each may be earmarked for undertaking research and development on topics connected
with rigid roads and flexible roads each. An additional Rs. 60-80 crore may be
earmarked for taking up research and development on topics connected with bridges
and viaducts. Another Rs. 30-40 crore may be earmarked for tunnel-related research
and development projects.

8.4.3 The Committee was informed that fear of audit results sometimes in reluctance to
accord expeditious approval to funding of research projects. The Committee wishes to
point out that the role of audit in these matters should be restricted to matters such as
certification of availability of funds and adequacy of budget provision only. It should
keep away from the choice of research projects and topics.

8.5 Indicative List of Research Topics

8.5.1 An indicative list of research problems that need to be addressed through the ministry is
given below. This list should not be considered as a comprehensive list of topics where
research and development needs have been identified. The project selection committee
should be empowered to also consider project proposals on other topics and take
decision on the basis of the merit of the proposal.

A) Concrete Roads

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Sr.No. Topic
1 Behaviour and design principles of Continuously reinforced Concrete
Pavement with a view to reduce cost and improve performance
2 Voided Dry Lean Concrete (DLC) as a base for new high density Concrete
with Panelled Concrete
3 Behaviour of low strength Concrete DLC and its effect on rigid pavement
behavior
4 High volume fly ash concrete for road pavement
5 Review of specifications for road construction on rocky bases.
6 Use of Polymer fibres and steel fibres for improvement in concrete
properties
7 Fatigue behaviour and durability of fibre concrete
8 Effect of temperature stress in concrete pavement
9 FEM Model for rigid pavement and panel concrete
10 Evaluation of fatigue life of different layers.
11 Bituminous overlay over concrete pavement
12 Stabilized soil base instead of dry lean concrete base for concrete
pavements
13 Modular concrete pavement technologies (precast panel concrete pavement
technologies)
14 Real-time smoothness measurements on Portland cement concrete
pavements during construction.

B) Flexible/Composite Pavement

SrNo. Topic
1 Use of geosynthetic materials for pavements and evolving a design
philosophy
2 Stabilised bases and sub bases using cemented additives, lime based additives
or chemical stabilizers- Pavement design philosophy and contribution of
fatigue in stabilized bases
3 Methodology for quantifying the benefits of modified bitumen – using
accelerated pavement testing methods.
4 Guidelines for mix design.
5 Validation of fatigue and rutting equations
6 Cement grouted bituminous macadam.
7 Road Construction in Black Cotton Soil
8 Operation and maintenance for long-term effectiveness of accelerated
pavement testing machine

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9 Economics of flexible and rigid pavements for varying conditions of traffic and
soil
10 Utilization of higher percentage of RAP content (up to 60%) in hot mix
recycling by using warm mix additives (laboratory and field evaluation)
11 Environmental life cycle assessment of rigid and flexible pavement.

C) Bridges and Viaducts

Sr.No. Topic
1 Rehabilitation and life extension techniques for reinforced concrete,
prestressed concrete and steel bridges in corrosive atmosphere
2 Establishment of internationally certified testing facilities for important
components as expansion joints, bearing, anchor for cable stayed
bridges, geogrid etc.
3 Wearing coat of bridge decks in combination with water proofing
treatment especially for segmentally constructed bridges.
4 Scour behaviour in multiple piles
5 Development of rapid methods for determination of load capacity of
large diameter piles using smaller diameter piles
6 Identification of defects in grouting of prestressing cables in bridges
7 Development of innovative techniques for determination of in-situ
strength of hardened concrete from partially hardened concrete
8 Development of innovativenon-destructive techniques for determination
of in-situ strength and permeability of concrete
9 Development of methods for rapid determination of alkali-aggregate
reaction in concrete
10 Development of innovative methods to inhibit alkali-aggregate reaction
in hardened concrete
11 Development of technologies, systems and equipment for accelerated
bridge construction
12 Development of innovative materials and techniques to assess and
improve durability of bridges in aggressive environment
13 Manufacture of High Damping Rubber Bearings and other types of
bearings for seismic isolation of Bridge superstructures.
14 Use of FRP composites in bridges: manufacturing process, improvement
of ductility and design methodologies.

D) Tunnels

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Sr.No. Topic
1 Improvement of ground ahead, for Himalayan tunnels with deep cover
2 Standardization of excavated size of long large diameter tunnels to
facilitate use of Tunnel Boring Machines

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9. SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS
9.1 The Co ittee s e o e datio s a e su a ized as elo :

9.1.1 The summary below is a chapter wise summarised extract of recommendations


contained in this report. For detailed recommendations it is suggested that the
individual chapters be referred.

9.2 Measures to promote Innovative Technologies, Materials and Equipment

9.2.1 The committee feels that there is need for the Government to declare firmly the
objective and spirit of the DBFOT and EPC contracts viz.: the principle of allowing the
Contractor the complete liberty to design the projects; within the limits set forth in the
concession agreements/ contracts/manuals/specifications. It must be made clear that
the drawings accompanying the tender documents are only indicative and the
contractor/concessionaire is free to design the project components such that the design
meets the parameters prescribed in the tender documents and that there is no question
of asking for a rebate or paying extra for the alternative designs conforming to the
requirements.

9.2.2 The Committee recommends that a standing Panel of Experts needs be constituted at
the national level to facilitate expeditious approvals to the proposals of using innovative
technologies/materials etc. The concessionaires or contractors, who seek approval of
alternative technologies or materials from the Independent Engineer / Authority's
Engineer (as the case may be) and meet with disapproval or where the response is not
provided in a definite time frame, should have the liberty to take these matters with
this Panel of Experts. The Panel of Experts would be expected to examine such
proposals and give their approval/ refuse approval within a definite time frame (e.g. one
month). The arrangement of such a Panel of Experts would, in the opinion of this
Committee, provide for a method of collective decision at the national level and help
achieve expeditious approvals and promote the use of appropriate technologies/
alternative materials. Dispute between the concessionaire/ contractor and the
I depe de t/ Autho it s E gi ee ega di g te h i al atte s e.g. Desig
methodology, interpretation of code etc.) should also be referred to the above panel for
giving decision

9.3 Implementation Issues

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9.3.1 The Committee felt that project decisions often get delayed due to the fear in the minds
of project officials about being hounded even for bona fide decisions. Genuine or bona
fide decisions should not result in penal actions as they tend to create and perpetuate a
system based on inaction or aversion to speedy decisions. The Committee recommends
appropriate amendments to vigilance procedures so that officials taking swift decisions
in the bona fide interest of the project are protected. This will benefit project
implementation immensely.

9.3.2 The Committee also recommends that performance assessment of the officials in charge
of implementation should be carried out among other things, their result orientation, in
terms of the achievement of the targets set. The system should acknowledge officers
who perform towards realization of project targets in the timelines set with a view to
facilitate the larger objective of expeditious implementation of highway projects. The
Committee suggests that a system of awards to acknowledge outstanding performances
may also be considered.

9.3.3 A systematic periodical monitoring/ reviews at the higher levels within the
governmental authorities to identify and resolve issues that plague project
implementation would help enhance speed of implementation. These reviews should
set apart projects severely lagging behind their targets and appropriate measures taken
to remove bottlenecks and to expedite them.

9.3.4 The Committee clearly feels that the current approach in the least cost method of
selection of consultants has to be changed in favour of Quality and Cost Based Selection
(QCBS) with weightage for the technical score of the consultants at 80% or more. In
exceptional cases where the projects demand a high level of innovation, the Quality
Based Selection (QBS) may also be resorted to. The Committee has made some
recommendations towards procurement procedure regarding consultancy assignments
as per Paragraph 3.4 in Chapter 3. The committee also recommends that track record of
consultants in previous assignments should be kept in view in evaluation of their
consultancy proposals.

9.3.5 The Committee recommends that the Engineers Bill comprising licensing of professional
engineers and governing their professional conduct needs to be given due importance,
and the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways may take up the matter with the
Ministry of Human Resources for further action in this regard.

9.3.6 The Committee recommends that drafting of IRC codes be assigned to experienced
consultants and academicians on payment basis as in several advanced countries. The
Committee also recommends that dedicated and adequate fund be made available to
the IRC to meet its expenses.
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9.3.7 The Committee recommends reviews of the current manuals/ standard agreement
documents to incorporate the experiences in project implementation, new
developments in technology, materials and equipment etc. and amend the manuals for
highways (two, four and six laning) at a frequency of at least once in two years.

9.3.8 The Committee recommends that the IRC publications may be available online and
amenable for downloading from the website of IRC on payment of suitable charges.

9.3.9 The Committee recommends mechanism for expeditious approval of environmental


clearances and evolution of well-defined policy toward cutting of trees and transfer of
Government lands. The Committee also recommends delegation of powers/authority
(with placement of funds) to the local project officials to enable them take decisions
regarding utility shifting, land acquisition payments etc. The Committee recommends
easing of quarry permits, review of Gram Panchayat NOCs to expedite project
implementation. The Committee recommends that the Safety Fund should be usable for
addressing local safety/road needs with powers to use these funds delegated to local
project officials. The Committee suggests that the concessionaire may be allowed to
retain income out of advertisement rights in the road land , on toll structures, under
passes as may be permissible as per IRC standards, avenue and median plantations, car
parking and road side facilities created by him. The Committee was of the view that the
condition of not allowing well water for construction needs to be changed with a view
to facilitate speedier implementation of projects.

9.3.10 The Committee feels that unless safety and reliability issues are involved, withholding of
COD by the Independent Engineer should not be allowed. COD need not be withheld for
issues such as compliance of conditions etc. for which a bank guarantee of an
appropriate value for timely compliance of conditions could be obtained from the
concessionaire and the COD approved. The matter of compensation if any could be
settled in due course. This will help avoid adverse financial consequences to the
concessionaires (and prevent the possibility of projects turning into NPAs).

9.3.11 The Committee recommends suitable amendments to provisions of concession


agreements/ issue of circulars to improve implementation of projects are covered in
Paragraph 3.8 of Chapter 3. Some of these are as follows:

9.3.11.1 The Committee recommends that the independent Engineer should be


appointed early in the development period so that he is useful in the preparatory
and design stage of the project. The Committee recommends that the
appointment of Independent Engineer could also be made a Condition Precedent.

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9.3.11.2 The Committee felt that having due regard to the freedom allowed to the
Concessionaire/Contractor in the DBFOT/EPC contracts, the Schedule B should
mention clearly the mandatory scope allowing the concessionaire/contractor to
design the project in accordance with these mandatory requirements. The
recommendation of the Committee arose since the Committee was informed of
instances where there was insistence in following the FRL mentioned in the
typical cross sections circulated in the Draft Concession Agreements negating
spirit of freedom for design in DBFOT.

9.3.11.3 The Committee was informed about the non-uniformity in practice of reference
to HFL especially in non-flood zone areas. The Committee acknowledges that HFL
refers to water bodies, streams, rivers etc. only and cannot be applicable beyond
the flood zone. For areas beyond the flood zone, the bottom of the subgrade
could be kept sufficiently above, say 0.6 m above ground level.

9.3.11.4 The Committee was informed that load tests of superstructure of one span,
exceeding 15m, for all new structures is obligatory as per the terms of
Concession Agreement. The Committee suggests that load test could be made
mandatory only for unusual structural arrangements or where any doubt exists
about quality of construction or any other problem is apprehended.

9.3.12 The Committee recommends mandating the use of automated construction using latest
equipment for concrete and bituminous works.

9.3.13 The Committee recommends that construction related National institutes e.g. Central
Institute of Mining and Fuel Research, Rookee and National Institute of Construction
Management and Research be encouraged to conduct courses for developmentof multi-
trade skills.

9.4 Rigid (Concrete) Pavements

9.4.1 The Committee recommends that concrete pavements should be a preferred option in
high density corridors and for highways in high rainfall zones, where bituminous
pavements, prone to damage in such conditions, involve high maintenance costs and
efforts. Further, concrete pavements would be preferable in order to obviate
inconvenience to traffic due to frequent maintenance of bituminous pavements e.g.
pavements inside tunnels.

9.4.2 The Committee recommends the use of Continuously Reinforced Concrete Pavements
(CRCP) technology with designs based on the AASHTO software, Introduction of
technology comprising Prestressed Concrete Panels, Concrete Overlays on existing
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bituminous surfaces, panelled concrete for new roads, Self-Compacting concrete in
urban situations (where use of slip form pavers is not feasible) etc. The Committee
recommends systematic performance assessment of the CRCP technology through
reputed institutes. The Committee also recommends the use of bituminous overlays
(Open Graded Friction Courses) over the jointed concrete pavements after trials to
validate the technology.

9.5 Flexible (Bituminous) Pavements

9.5.1 The Committee recommends the use of technologies e.g. Gap Graded Wearing Courses
using rubberized bitumen, Bituminous Concrete using Polymer Modified Bitumen,
Warm Mix Asphalts (to reduce environmental pollution), Stabilization techniques for
various layers of pavement, Functionalized polyethylene modifiers for modified bitumen
equivalent to VG 40, Glass fibre polyester hybrid geosynthetic paving mats and cold and
hot recycling of asphalt pavements.

9.5.2 The Committee also recommends a uniform practice towards renewal of pavements and
suggests a methodology for arriving at the thickness of renewal coats.

9.5.3 The Committee recommends that field studies be carried out to append the studies
done at the IIT Madras towards performance of modified bitumen of various types to
facilitate quantification of the expected benefits in use of modifiers. The Committee
wishes to point out that there are reports of indigenous bitumen not meeting the
stipulated quality standards and this needs to be resolved by taking up the matter with
petroleum ministry. The import of bitumen needs also to be considered in view of the
benefits it offers.

9.6 Tunnels

9.6.1 The Committee recommends that tunnels should be considered on the basis of
assessment of benefits (e.g. saving in travel distance or climbing up and down) It is
suggested that while framing every DPR, the possibilities of providing tunnels as an
alternative to detours/ circuitous routes in hilly areas should be explored.

9.6.2 The Committee suggests the provision of artificial Cut and Cover Tunnels of adequate
lengths at the location of deep open cuts, outside excavated portalsat entrances of
bored tunnels and potential slip zones along the alignment of roads to avoid blockage
due to landslides and resultant hindrance to traffic (e.g. in the Himalayas). The length
of such a cut and cover tunnel beyond the bored tunnel will depend on the local
geotechnical conditions.
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9.6.3 Procurement of Land required for muck disposal and temporary construction camps,
licenses and permits for storage of explosives and arrangements for construction power
should be arranged before award of contracts, so as to avoid delays during execution on
this score.

9.6.4 Adoption of controlled blasting for tunnels (with appropriate noise abatement measures
and monitoring during execution) should be considered even in the reserved forest
areas, and special permission from the Ministry of Environment and Forests should be
obtained preferably before the award of work of such tunnels.

9.6.5 Tunnel project DPR should be made available to the bidders with all the details of
investigations/ geotechnical data for bidders to base their bids. A method should be
provided for adjustment to the contract price due to the difference between the lengths
of tunnel in different type of strata encountered and that expected on the basis of
geotechnical data available in the DPR/ bid documents.

9.6.6 Tunnel Excavation by Drill and Blast Method is the cheapest and attempt should be
made to use it wherever possible. Tunnels under populated areas and sensitive
structures should be excavated by Road Headers provided, the UCS of the rock is below
120 MPa, if feasible. Tunnels under populated areas and sensitive structures may have
to be excavated by Tunnel Boring Machines only if the UCS of the rock is above 120 MPa,
even at a prohibitive cost, as there is no other practical method of excavation. Use of
Tunnel Boring Machines should also be considered for tunnels longer than 10 km and
where high speed tunneling is called for.

9.6.7 Though provision of cladding is not an absolute necessity, cladding should be considered
to make long tunnels user-friendly.

9.6.8 The Committee recommends that in order to ensure user safety and comfort, stricter
supervision of installation and maintenance of lighting and ventilation should be carried
out in long tunnels. The committee recommends that lighting and ventilation of a
tunnel should not be compromised for achieving economy, since it affects safety.

9.6.9 The Committee recommends that mobile phone service providers should be encouraged
to install transponders inside long tunnels to create connectivity.

9.7 Bridges

9.7.1 The Committee recommends the use of materials such as cementitious additives and
admixtures in cement concrete e.g. Superplasticizers, Pozzolanas etc. The use of Self-
Compacting Concrete, High Performance Concrete should be encouraged.
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9.7.2 The Committee recommends the use of Spherical Bearings for bridges. The use of High
Damping Rubber (HDR) bearings which act as isolators under seismic conditions is also
recommended.

9.7.3 The Committee recommends the use of High Strength Structural Steel for steel bridges.
The Committee recommends the use of load indicating washers for high strength
friction bolts. The Committee recommends the use of corrosion resistant or weathering
steel to reduce life cycle costs of steel bridges.

9.7.4 The Committee recommends the use of corrosion resistant bars and use of ready to use
rebar technology.

9.7.5 The Committee suggests the use of Fiber Reinforced Polymers (FRP) laminates for
repairs and rehabilitation of bridge structures.

9.7.6 The Committee recommends that waterproofing of concrete decks is necessary


especially when segmental construction is to be deployed. The recommendations
towards such waterproofing treatment are covered in Paragraph 7.3.12 in Chapter 7.

9.7.7 The Committee recommends that the standard plans for bridges published by the Indian
Roads Congress some years ago (and now out of date) should be revised to conform to
the present codes to enable them to be adopted for bridge designs.

9.7.8 The Committee stresses the need to bring all the IRC codes in sync with each other
especially with the introduction of the IRC 112. The Committee also recommends
streamlining of seismic design provisions contained in the BIS, IRC and the Railway
codes through formation of an apex committee.

9.7.9 The Committee recommends that continuous and jointless bridges that require
minimum bearings and expansion joints should be preferred since they are more
durable and aesthetic, besides facilitating better riding comfort unless there are specific
situations which do not favour adoption of such bridges.

9.7.10 The Committee recommends that ground supported staging should be avoided as far as
possible, with a view to ensure safety during construction and prevent inconvenience to
traffic.

9.7.11 Steel and steel-concrete composite bridges can be advantageously used in many
instances e.g. in ROBs.

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9.7.12 It is obvious that precast construction offers the advantage of assured quality through
factory like casting process. One of the important measures to improve quality and
increase the speed of construction is the adoption of standardized factory made precast
products such as girders, slabs, etc. for bridges.

9.7.13 The Committee recommends innovative technologies e.g. Corrugated Steel Plate Arches
(thin steel plate arches) or thin precast concrete arches as economical and speedy
alternative for small bridges or cross drainage structures.

9.7.14 With a view to promote factory produced pre cast bridge construction, pre-casting
factories should be encouraged to be set up in all major states. Excise duty on produce
of such factories should be withdrawn. Precast products from such factories e.g. girders,
box structures for culverts etc. can be used for construction of various highway
structures. Standard designs of these standard components can be got approved from
MORTH for use in bridges, cross drainage structures etc., so that further design checks
during construction may not be needed. A scheme for approval of design from MORTH
after paying the necessary charges should be established. If these approved designs are
used, then there should be no further scrutiny of structural design by either
Independent Engineer or authority.

9.7.15 The committee recommends deployment of large diameter piles such as 2.0 m/ 2.5m (or
larger diameters) for speedy and reliable construction. Such piles should be examined
for adoption as alternative to well foundations.

9.7.16 The committee recommends the use of mono piles with large diameter piles (2.0 m and
above) where appropriate. The possibility of extending the mono pile above ground to
make the pier should be explored, where possible, as this would eliminate the necessity
of a pile cap, which is essential to enable load transfer from the pier to the piles below.

9.7.17 The Committee recommends the use of low strain (Integrity testing) and high strain
testing after proper calibration and Ultrasonic Pulse Velocity (UPV) tests through pre-
installed tubes for larger diameter piles should be mandatory to ensure soundness of
concrete in piles.

9.7.18 Use of advanced piling equipment which are now available (with the capability to carry
out boring into hard rock and which make it possible to install large diameter deep
foundations in such strata) should be encouraged in preference to well foundations
which are not suitable for sinking in such strata.

9.7.19 The Committee recommends the adoption of Accelerated Bridge Construction involving
use of new materials, design process, construction procedure, high-capacity materials
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and new management methods. The key feature of ABC is significant reduction in onsite
construction time and is contributing to a paradigm shift in the design, construction and
maintenance of bridges. The features of this technology are covered in Paragraph 7.13
of Chapter 7.

9.8 Research in the Highway Sector

9.8.1 The Committee emphasizes the importance of research and development in the field of
evolution of technology in the highway sector.

9.8.2 The Committee recommends upgradation of laboratories in the academic institutions


through earmarking of funds for this purpose on an annual basis.

9.8.3 The Committee feels that annual research funding provided by MORTH should be
significant (at least in the range of Rs. 150-200 crores) considering the size of the
National Highway Project undertaken by the Government. The projects to be supported
should be judiciously selected based on the priorities of research identified by the
ministry and the quality of the proposal. The process of selection of the research
projects should follow the principles enumerated in this report.

9.8.4 The Committee recommends that adequate annual budgetary provision be made
available to CRRI to operate the accelerated pavement testing equipment. The
Committee recommends levy of a nominal charge for testing a product/technology and
the remaining cost of operating this machine may be met out from this grant. This will
enable testing and promotion of various technologies more freely.

9.8.5 The Committee recommends that research projects on problems as per the indicative
list given in Chapter 8 may be taken up through the ministry.

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