Sustainable Roads Revolution: Punjab Embraces Blue and Plastic Roads
Punjab, the capital city of Pakistan, is spearheading a revolutionary shift towards sustainable infrastructure with its introduction of “blue roads” and the upcoming construction of “plastic roads.” The province’s caretaker Chief Minister, Mohsin Naqvi, has enthusiastically endorsed the implementation of plastic roads, highlighting their exceptional resilience compared to traditional bitumen roads.
To expedite progress, CM Naqvi has called for a comprehensive strategy to ensure the timely completion of 107 inter-district road construction projects within just three months. Emphasizing transparency and maintaining high-quality standards, he aims to set new benchmarks for road construction endeavors.
In line with Punjab’s commitment to efficiency and accountability, all road construction contracts are awarded through electronic procurement methods. Additionally, the province is on the cusp of achieving a significant milestone with 137 road rehabilitation projects covering an extensive stretch of approximately 2600 kilometers to further enhance its infrastructure.
Plastic roads offer a sustainable solution to the pressing global challenge of plastic waste. These innovative roads incorporate plastic, either wholly or partially, in conjunction with other materials during their construction. A recent report from the World Bank highlights the rising recognition of plastic roads worldwide for their environmental benefits, surpassing traditional coal tar-based roads.
Having pioneered plastic road construction about two decades ago, India has established an extensive network spanning approximately 60,000 miles across the country. Encouraged by India’s success, countries like Britain, Europe, various parts of Asia, Vietnam, Mexico, South Africa, the United States, and the Philippines are now eagerly preparing to follow suit.
Lahore, the capital city of Punjab, has already embraced sustainable innovation with its visionary introduction of the “Blue Road” earlier in May 2023. Proudly initiated by the Punjab Central Business District Development Authority (PCBDDA), the Blue Road represents Asia’s pioneering sustainable road concept. Featuring various energy-conserving elements, the road boasts a specialized reflective coating that reduces heat absorption, keeping the road surface cooler. This advanced coating also enhances visibility for drivers during nighttime, significantly contributing to safer roads and improved safety for all residents.
Punjab’s remarkable strides in adopting sustainable road technologies, including the introduction of plastic roads, further exemplify the province’s commitment to environmentally conscious infrastructure development. By embracing such initiatives, Punjab is leading the way towards a greener and more sustainable future, not just in the realm of road construction but also as an inspiring example for other regions to follow. The province’s visionary approach and dedication to sustainable practices promise to create lasting positive impacts on the environment and society as a whole.