First publishedin World Highways
Volvo CE machines worked successfully on the Shillong bypass project in India
A new two-lane road has been built in Meghalaya, India, providing a challenging project for the construction team
The new road lies at a comparatively high altitude and provides a bypass around Shillong, the capital of Meghalaya and which is one of the smallest states in India.
Shillong is located 1,496m above sea level, with the highest point being Shillong Peak at almost 2,000m, and the area has a much cooler climate than the rest of tropical India. Shillong is also only 55km away from Mawsynram, which is officially the world’s wettest place.
The Shillong bypass connects the top of the main NH-40 highway starting at Umiam in Ri-Bhoi district to the bottom of the NH-44 highway at Mawryngknend in the East Khasi Hills district. It included building about 500km of road for two-lane traffic as well as a 2.5m shoulder on each side. The National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) awarded the project to Shillong Expressway, which then contracted out the work to infrastructure company, InfraProjects.
The total project cost an estimated US$39.8 million (2,510 million Rupees) and was completed in spring 2014, two years after the project commenced. The work was finished before its scheduled completion date and has raised the expectation of more road construction in the region. Two major high level steel girder bridges were also constructed, 45m long by 30m high, as well as five minor bridges, an underpass, four bypasses, two major junctions, 64 small junctions and seven bus bays.
GR Infra Projects used excavators from Volvo CE throughout the project, including five 14tonne class EC140BLCs and two 20tonne EC210B-Series models to dig and remove overburden. These were supplied and supported by local Volvo CE dealer, Esdee Solutech.
Because of the mountainous terrain, a lot of cut and fill was required, resulting in a huge amount of earthmoving in order to keep to schedule. For day-to-day operations the company also used other Volvo CE machines including, four DD100 asphalt compactors, two SD110 soil compactors, G930 graders, L120 wheeled loaders and an ABG7820
GR Infra Projects specialises in building highways and bridges across India, employing about 130 civil engineers. The company has successfully delivered over 150 road projects, including 3,200km in Rajasthan, Haryana, UP, Bihar, Jharkhand and the North-East, almost always being finished ahead of the completion date. GR Infra Projects commented that it is a first for the north-east region in that a highway of this magnitude has been completed ahead of schedule.