Climate-resilient roads for State

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Aid from World Bank and German development bank KfW under Rebuild Kerala

The 5,000-odd km of roads damaged in the deluge last August to be developed under Rebuild Kerala with World Bank and German development bank KfW aid will be climate resilient.

Resilient design will be adopted for the roads and drainages, embankments, slope and soil stabilisation measures, retaining walls, and steps to avoid water retention will be the key features of the roads.

Worldclass corridors

A 5,000-km core road network is to be created by upgrading the roads into world-class corridors on the parameters of the WB-funded Kerala State Transport Project (KSTP) corridors.

To be taken up as part of Rebuild Kerala, the road upgrade will be done by the Public Works Department.

A core road network authority will be formed and the government had issued orders to this effect, sources said.

Initially, the core roads will be in 800 km and the corridors will be identified based on passenger car unit (pcu) movement, connectivity to economic centres, hospitals, educational institutions, and maximum number of public and commercial vehicles.

Core roads

Transport planners have found that 80% of the traffic move along 15% of the road network in the State.

The World Bank will give technical support and aid from the $150 million promised to the State and the KfW aid will be used.

The process to identify core roads and prepare a detailed project report (DPR) has commenced, the sources said.

$19 million

Utilising $19 million to be provided by the World Bank, 300 km of rural roads in Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Idukki, Wayanad, and Kannur under the Local Self-Government Department (LSGD) will be made climate resistant.

Another 63 km of roads in Pathanamthitta, Idukki, and Wayanad under the Public Works Department will be upgraded utilising a WB aid of $23 million.

Eight districts

The restructuring of the $216-million World Bank loan for the ongoing Phase II of the KSTP is for upgrading 363 km of State highways traversing through eight districts.

The remaining 1,769 km LSGD roads damaged in the floods will be upgraded in a phased manner.

A project management unit has been set up for the LSGD in the capital as done for the PWD for executing the KSTP project.

The unit will be headed by a project director. In the seven districts, a project implementation unit has been set up under an executive engineer.

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