“Cambian Asfalto por Hormigón en la Ruta de Acceso sur a Valparaíso”
(Asphalt Changed to Concrete on the Southern Access Route to Valparaiso)
The intense traffic of heavy vehicles on Gunpowder Road in Valparaiso, Chile deteriorated within 10 years after the road was built. The construction for the route, known as Camino La Polvora, began in 2001 and was completed in 2007 at a cost of US $156 million—the highest road expense of the entire country. A decade after its construction, the southern access to Valparaiso, Chile began cracking—known as “alligator”—and required additional public investment. The initial price for the asphalt was already a higher cost per kilometer implemented in the country—for the total replacement of the pavement in four traffic lanes along 16 kilometers.
The trucks heading to the port facilities could not pass through the center of Valparaiso, therefore, there was further deterioration of the city route compulsory for this type of vehicle. The high traffic of heavy vehicles—over one thousand daily entering and leaving the port areas—fulfilled the pavement design life in less than a decade.
The asphalt road will be changed to reinforced concrete slabs of 23 centimeters thick, allowing to extend the life of the road for at least another 20 years. Mauricio Pinto, Regional Director of Roads, said that this strengthening responds to high stress subjected to this route. “There is no other route in Chile that has more truck traffic than this,” he said.
Lieutenant Carlos Gamboa Urra, Investigation Section of Traffic Accidents (SIAT) of police, said that the change of pavement improves the security of the route, because the concrete increases the coefficient of friction and a better contact between the tire and pavement, with a friction that reduces the stopping time when braking. Miguel Saavedra, SEREMI Works of Valparaiso, said the replacement work of the pavement will last until the end of 2016.
To read the entire article by Hernán Arellano Cisternas, El Mercurio, Platforma Urbana, Chile, please click here.