GC roads condition is good: Lyonpo Dorji Choden
The gewog centre roads quality across the country is good in general.
That was what the Works and Human Settlement, Lyonpo Dorji Choden said during the 29th meet the press held on 3 February.
“There are few issues on the poor quality of the road and continuous monitoring is being carried out,” Lyonpo said.
Presenting the current status, Lyonpo Dorji Choden said that construction of 23 Gewog Connectivity (GC) roads have been completed, while 24 GC roads are being blacktopped.
Improvement works are also being carried out in 45 GC roads today. Four roads are being funded by different sources and nine new roads are also under construction.
However, Lunana, Soed, and Lingzhi do not have the GC roads at present, Lyonpo said.
Meanwhile, Lyonchen Tshering Tobgay also updated about roads development. Lyonchen said 114 GC roads that stretch about 1,000 km require blacktopping.
“It costs Nu. 3.65 billion,” Lyonchen said. “Most of them are funded by the government of India.”
There are 84 packages, Lyonchen said, adding it creates opportunity for the contractors.
Lyonpo Dorji Choden said blacktopping is the last stage of work. Improvement works like drainage, sub bases, alignments took more time than blacktopping, she explained.
“When we are blacktopping 1,000 km of road, I suppose small problem will definitely be there,” Lyonpo Dorji Choden said.
There are also factors that contribute to deteriorating road conditions. Transporting of wet sand from Punatsangchhu towards Thimphu affected the road condition leading to potholes.
“We need to take care of the road after the construction and blacktopping,” the minister said, pointing out cost would increase to increase the thickness of blacktopping.
“Today we are spending almost three million per km for blacktopping and even that is insufficient if we have to put in good drainage system.”
Country’s economic status and challenging site locations also contribute to the quality. Right temperature, good climatic condition, and a good site are required for a better blacktopping of a road, Lyonpo said.
The Works and Human Settlement Minister Dorji Choden highlighted that if the base course of the road is done properly along with proper installation of drainage along the road, 25mm of blacktopping will be enough.
Meanwhile, Lyonchen Tshering Tobgay further said GC roads are primarily constructed for the gewog administration and the people.
“If vehicles carrying quarries and logs travel in that road, it will be destroyed within a month,” he said.
“The road is meant for rural traffic and not for industrial traffic where truck carries sand, minerals and logs.”