Road classification is primarily based on a variety of criteria, such as, traffic volume, road-width and surface type and also on links between specific locations. If warranted, the roads are reclassified to the next higher category keeping in view the traffic density, tourist usage, and industrial importance.
The roads in the State of Uttar Pradesh are classified into the following five categories based on functional
and administrative criteria:
- National Highways (NH)
- State Highways (SH)
- Major District Roads (MDR)
- Other District Roads (ODR)
- Village Roads (VR)
The Public Works Department (PWD) is the major department dealing with the State Highways, Major District Roads, Other District Roads and a part of the Village Roads in the state.
Core Road Network
The Core Road Network concept was developed by the Techno-Economic Feasibility Consultants i.e., DHV in order to focus budget allocation of resources for road maintenance. Another part of the exercise was to simplify maintenance management practices, with a view to enhance the chances of their sustainability. Their definition of a Core Road Network is:
“The minimum road network required to support the economic and social development of Uttar Pradesh by providing good quality road linkages between the major population, industrial and culturally valuable locations in the state. The Core Road Network most influences the economic well-being of the state, therefore has to be maintained at all times”.
The Government of Uttar Pradesh (GoUP) recognizes that in order to achieve its objectives in terms of economic growth, an effective and efficient road network has a key role to play. Such a network is crucial in accelerating industrial growth, enhancing agriculture productivity and integrating the less developed regions. Accordingly, in 2013, following a recommendation in the UPSRP, the GoUP undertook a comprehensive transport masterplan and defined a Strategic Core Road Network (CRN) of 24095 km, to be developed and maintained to enable upward social mobility and economic development of the state. The defined CRN included 7,550 km NHs, 7,530 m SHs, 5761 km MDRs and 3,254km ODR. The Masterplan included the definition of a 20‐year road sector development plan for the road network in the state, which was adopted subsequently by the GoUP. For the CRN, the GoUP envisaged an investment program of about US$ 14 billion to upgrade from 1 lane to 2 lane or 4 lane depending on traffic levels, 16000 Km (excluding the NHs, which are funded by the Central Government) in four phases till 2031. It was estimated that about 60 percent of the required investment could be met with budgetary and central government support, 25 percent from multilateral financial institutions, and the remaining 15 percent from the private sector via a public private partnership. The project will support the introduction of a web based and integrated Project Management Information System (PMIS) to provide relevant, timely and updated project information to all stakeholders to enable monitoring of project activities, inputs, outputs and results. This could be extended to all PWD projects, ensuring the benefits accrue from the entire PWD portfolio.
Parameters used for identifying the core road network
- National Highways were automatically included in the core road network of the State. • State Highways which link UP with adjacent states or neighboring countries were then added to the core road network, to provide external economic linkages.
- Subsequently, it was deemed important that every district capital should have access to the national road network with at least one good road link. Where this criterion was not met by the National and State Highways mentioned above, a local road was selected which fulfilled this function.
- Adjacent district headquarters also have to be linked to each other by means of a road link of sufficient capacity to accommodate the prevailing traffic.
- Major industrial centres, like Kanpur, which are district headquarters, were subsequently linked to the core road network, by inserting the roads that link these centres to the national road network and markets.
- Likewise, major truck routes have been added to the strategic road network on the assumption that commercial traffic is a major road user, with economic significance for the State.
- Roads with current traffic volumes exceeding 2,000 fast moving vehicles a day (according to the traffic model for this study) were added to the network, if not already in one of the categories above.
- Routes that supply the only road connection to a remote area were included on the grounds of connectivity.
Finally, access to prominent tourist and pilgrimage centers was added as part of the core road network.