Main Road - Phuthaditjhaba/Harrismith still offers hard-wearing solution after 10 years

01 December 2004


TMain Road - Phuthaditjhaba/Harrismith

echnicrete was awarded the contract to supply 114000 square meters of 80 mm interlocking paving blocks for this labour intensive, major road project.

Although in this case paving blocks are more expensive than conventional blacktop surfacing, the maintenance free life offered by paving will result in a lower cost for the life of the road. However, the greatest attraction of paving is that it is relatively simple to lay and therefore ideal where the provision of work for the local community was as important as the provision of a road itself. This was and still is completely in line with the principles of the Government's requirements for labour intensive products.

There are many advantages in using blocks for roads, i.e. a greater resistance to skidding in wet weather due to the chamfered joints of the blocks and the rapid dissipation of surface water, low maintenance costs and should remedial work be necessary to underground services, the blocks can be removed and replaced without impairing the overall appearance and riding surface of the road.

Once laid the contract block roadway can be immediately utilized as it does not have to wait for curing thereby providing an immediate return on investment.

On this project, the use of concrete block paving contributed to 20% of the total contact value being transferred into the local community in the form of wages. This provided the community with a considerable financial upliftment and convinced the community that all future roads must also be surfaced with concrete blocks.

Completed 10 years ago, the road has performed extremely well under moderately heavy traffic conditions, in fact the road has require no maintenance at all.