Satprem from the Auroville Earth Institute has shared his latest report on the Crown Road works, highlighting that the new precast reinforced cement concrete (RCC) slabs that the AVFO’s ‘ATDC’ are utilizing in their design do not comply with any Indian standards for roads. Amongst other observations, he notes:
- The road slabs, which have an ‘interlocking’ system, are not made properly and are designed in a way that will make them difficult to fit and will compromise the road’s durability.
- The road slabs that have been laid so far have been laid on unlevelled ground on top of a plastic sheet, a method which “does not follow any standard practice again and cannot give a good quality work.”
- Where the road slabs have already been laid, adjacent slabs are showing a difference in height of up to 1.2cm with gaps between the laid slabs of up to 1.3cm. It is not clear how this can be corrected given the weight of the slabs and the method of laying.
- The finish of pure cement milk that covers the slabs will most likely make the road “very slippery during heavy rainfall”. Satprem also predicts that “this road will be flooded, as well as the surrounding areas”.
- It appears that a lot of materials, paid for by the Government of India for the Crown Road, are being used for other works which are not in any contract with the CPWD – a possible misappropriation of funds.
- The new design with RCC precast slabs emits 6,630 Tons of CO2, which represents 952% more carbon emissions than the road planned with paver blocks. Sequestering these 6,630 tons of CO2 would need 20 years by an additional forest of 32 hectares, planted with 1,000 trees per hectare.
You can read his full report here.