Design-related problems: These include a lack of detailed specifications by the architects, poor design reflection and continuous changes in the design by the client.
Cost overruns: Too many undocumented design changes can incur a cost overrun beyond the allocated budget. It also makes the process tedious to trace back and locate the exact points that triggered these additional costs.
Environmental impacts: Some negative environmental impacts of road construction include waste disposal dumping, nuisance noise, dust pollution, soil erosion, natural vegetation removal, disturbance to wildlife, and population displacement.
Project delays: Construction delay is considered to be one of the most recurring problems in the road construction industry and it damages project success in terms of time, cost, quality, and safety.
Maintenance and repairs: Road repair is a costly job. For example, in fiscal 2020, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, India, allocated Rs 3,150 crore for the maintenance of roads and highways, which is 17% higher than the revised estimates for fiscal 2019.
The innovations in the sector can be divided into three phases of the project lifecycle, namely, road construction materials and machines, design and implementation, and highway operations and management.
In the road construction materials and machines sector, the use of
innovative materials, automation, and machine control technologies has
been encouraged to improve efficiency and lower the environmental
impact. In the design and implementation phases, the technological
advancements have increased the construction speed and lowered the
project lifecycle cost. Furthermore, technology-based initiatives are
increasingly being adopted in the highway operations and management
phase to improve the operation and management of highways.