5,000 km of arterial roads under maintenance across Iran

May 25, 2020 - 15:16

TEHRAN – Head of Iran Road Maintenance and Transportation Organization (RMTO) said more than 5,000 kilometers (km) of arterial roads across the country are going through maintenance operations, IRIB reported.

“The nationwide plan to improve the quality of asphalt coating of the country's arterial roads with 20 trillion rials of (about $476 million) of funding is being implemented on 5,000 kilometers of the country’s roads to improve their condition,” Abdolhashem Hassan-Nia said.

According to the official, the country's roads have been severely damaged due to heavy rains and snowfall in the past two years and studies by the country's Pavement Management System (PMS) conducted before the beginning of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20) show that 18,000 km of highways, 20,000 km of main roads and 2,400 km of highways across the country are in bad condition.

Currently, 350 asphalt quality improvement projects are being carried out in the country's roads, especially arterial roads in main corridors such as Bandar Abbas - Tehran, Isfahan - Shiraz, Bushehr - Tehran, Tehran - Tabriz, and Tehran – Mashhad, he said.

Noting that the plan will continue until the end of the eighth Iranian calendar month of Aban (November 20), the official said: "In this extensive operation, in addition to all the RMTO facilities, we have also used the potentials of the private sector."

According to the official, the PMS categorizes the roads into three groups in terms of the level of damage, which are severe, moderate, and low, and after this categorization, the roads are prioritized by RMTO to go through maintenance operations.

In late December 2019, RMTO’s Deputy Director Heidar Mataei had said that the country’s roads need 120 trillion rials (about $2.8 billion) of annual funding to be properly maintained.

“In order to carry out maintenance operations for 36,000 kilometers of arterial roads in the country, 120 trillion rials is needed annually,” he said.

In the most optimistic case, credits and allocations will provide about 35 percent of the required fund, so maintaining roads have been prioritized in order to optimize the costs, in this regard, transit corridors are the top priority, according to the official.

Earlier that month, Iran’s deputy transport minister for resource planning and management said the county needs over 1.8 quadrillion rials (about $42.8 billion) of financial resources for completing its transportation infrastructure projects.

Speaking on the sidelines of the 4th International Exhibition of Transportation, Logistics, and Related Industries, Amir Mahmoud Ghaffari said: “In this regard, the Transport Development Fund has been established as the only specialized and financial institution in the field, for supporting the Transport Ministry’s infrastructure projects and the modernization of the transport fleet.”

In the past two decades, Iran’s transportation infrastructure has gone through major transformation, and every year the country is advancing more in this area.

Currently, more than 80 percent of the country’s roads are paved and the government is also hugely planning on expanding and developing the country’s railway network.

EF/MA

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