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Engineers seek standards in road construction projects

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For enduring infrastructure, engineers have reiterated the need to apply innovative designs to the delivery of long-term sustainable solutions for the construction of new roads in urban and rural areas of the country.

They referenced urban road design as practiced in the Federal Capital Development Authority, Abuja, as one of the most practical ways of learning, and that if most cities in the country could adopt this, the towns and cities, would be places to be proud of.

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The past President, Nigerian Institution of Structural Engineers, (NIStructE) Dr. Victor Oyenuga led the discussion during a virtual E-training hosted by the Nigerian Institution of Civil Engineers, Lagos State Chapter.

Oyenuga noted that modern practice all over the world is to bury all the utilities underground, which is what is been followed in Abuja metropolis.

He stressed that objects seen on the roads or streets are the streetlight poles for illumination while the various utilities are buried in most cases under the verges and walkway for the various road cross-sections.

Oyenuga said: “The utilities include, water supply network pipes and fire fighting hydrants, wastewater network pipes, stormwater network pipes, street lighting cables, power distribution cables, and telecommunications ducts. These utilities will be located under the various sidewalks at a specific depth. In most cases, the sewer manholes, telecoms chambers, and street lighting poles are staggered to avoid unnecessary congestions.”

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He added, “As highways engineers, we need to consider this in our planning and designs. They are now part of the transportation system and banning them from major roads as in Lagos and Abuja is not a solution.

Oyenuga who is also the Managing Director, Vasons Concept Consultants Limited, said urban roads should be planned into an interconnected network owing to human and economic activities and exchange. The roads, he stated must be associated with designated traffic engineering equipment like give way signs, stop signs, and carriage markings.

Speaking on the effect of refuse, and other forms of abuse on road and transportation infrastructure in Lagos state, the special adviser to Lagos state governor on works and infrastructure, Mrs. Aramide Adeyoye, an engineer, said it is imperative that all stakeholders are made aware of the joint ownership of road infrastructure to prevent abuse and for their longevity.

She said professionals must deliberately and consciously develop a legal and policy framework that would preserve road infrastructure and eliminate abuse.

Adeyoye said: “It is necessary that all the relevant agencies of government at the state, local and federal levels must know, acknowledge and tackle drainage management issues within its purview. A comprehensive drainage management plan that manages all the issues associated with drainages must be put in place.

“Polluter pay principle must be institutionalised to ensure that each polluter is made to pay adequate tariffs to ensure commensurate mitigation, and there should be proper environmental management plan to take care of solid and liquid wastes.”

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