Flemish motorways to receive complete facelift

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The state of Belgian motorways often leaves much to be desired. Therefore a total of 140 kilometres of motorway spread over 14 locations have been earmarked for extensive repair works next year. This year a total of 75 kilometres was under repair. The repair plan must prevent the numerous cracks and potholes in the road surface that occurred last year  as a result of extreme weather conditions during winter and summer. “Our biggest challenge is structural maintenance,” explains Tom Roelants of the Flemish Agency for Roads and Traffic. “In other words, improving Flemish roads to a more acceptable level,” he adds. In most cases the top layer of the road surface will be replaced by new asphalt. Early next year sections of the E34, E313 and the ring road around Brussels are scheduled for repair work, followed by the E17 and E40 some months later. The road works have been carefully planned in deliberation with various road user organisations and may require workers to work around the clock to ensure road users suffer as little inconvenience as possible. Moreover road works will be limited to one motorway at a time within one region so that road users will always have an alternative route, the Agency for roads has assured. During the past two years “enormous efforts” have been made to work away the road maintenance backlog, says Minister for Mobility and Public Works in the government of Flanders, Hilde Crevits CD&V. “By 2015 I plan to bring the motorway network up to standard and by 2020 the regional road network must be completely upgraded,” Crevits insists. She further adds that in future she hopes to introduce “automatic” repair works, which means "the use of computers to detect sections in need of repairs to prevent potholes from developing.”  

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