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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Warsaw. POW section to be replaced. Road workers detected irregularities in the road surface

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The General Directorate for National Roads and Motorways has detected irregularities in the concrete pavement of a section of the Southern Bypass of Warsaw. It is about “no frost resistance required” at approximately 400 meters, outside the tunnel. The contractor is to correct this at his own expense.

On the Ursynów section of the South Bypass of Warsaw, tests and approvals are still ongoing. – During the acceptance procedures, we detected irregularities in the concrete pavement outside the tunnel. This is a 400-meter section of the left and middle lanes of one carriageway of the main route on the eastern side of the Ursynów junction, a spokeswoman for the Warsaw branch of GDDKiA Małgorzata Tarnowska told PAP.

She also noted that “control tests are carried out at every stage of the works, as well as throughout the warranty period and subsequent use”. During one of these tests, the laboratory found irregularities in the laid concrete pavement. – They are located on an approximately 400-meter section of the left and middle lanes, on one lane between the exit from the S2 route to Branickiego Street and the tunnel entrance – clarified Tarnowska.

It turned out that the irregularities refer to the “lack of the required frost resistance”. The contractor was immediately informed about this fact, who – as the spokeswoman said – had already developed a repair program for the unfortunate fragment of the pavement. He has already started the preparatory work. According to GDDKiA, the demolition of the surface is to be completed by September 19, and the laying of a new one, along with the restoration of other elements, will take about a week. The contractor will cover all costs related to the repair.


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They simulate the conditions in which the pavement will function

Testing the frost resistance of concrete in the presence of de-icing salts used for winter road maintenance is one of the basic tests performed for the concrete from which the road surface is made. They allow to assess whether the surface will remain durable in winter, when it is exposed to frost and the use of de-icing agents. These factors cause the degradation of the pavement through its surface exfoliation – loosening of the cement slurry and aggregate.

Such tests are long-term because, including the necessary maturation time of the concrete, the result is known three months after sampling. The test method is based on simulating the conditions in which the pavement will function. – To this end, a 3% sodium chloride solution is poured on the surface of the samples, which are properly prepared for testing in advance. Concrete samples prepared in this way are subjected to 56 cycles of alternating freezing and thawing in a special chamber – explained the spokeswoman.

All activities are closely monitored. – The result is obtained by determining the weight loss of the tested samples and on this basis we are able to determine whether the concrete has the appropriate category of resistance to cyclic freezing and thawing in the presence of de-icing salts – Tarnowska noted. The test method was developed in Sweden and is now used in many European countries.

POW tunnel near UrsynówKrzysztof Nalewajko / GDDKiA

When is the opening of POW?

– There is still an inspection by the State Fire Service ahead of us. The next step will be to submit an application to the Provincial Inspectorate of Construction Supervision in Warsaw (WINB) for a permit for use, Tarnowska said. As she pointed out, it is a complex administrative procedure during which WINB employees have to check extensive as-built documentation, then conduct a field inspection and issue an occupancy permit. Only this document will make it possible to commission the S2 route together with the tunnel under Ursynów. – We assume that it will happen this fall – said Tarnowska.

However, this does not explain whether the need to replace the incorrect surface means further delays in putting the route into service. For several months, road engineers have been reporting that the first drivers will be able to drive it “in the fall”, but they do not specify which month it is for. – By the end of September, we plan to complete the acceptance and tests, then only waiting for the issuance of the occupancy permit. We repeat it invariably that this autumn the drivers will go through the tunnel – said Szymon Piechowiak, a spokesman for GDDKiA in August, in an interview with the editors of the Polska i Świat magazine.

Deadline for completion of the South Bypass of Warsaw has already been moved several times. Originally, the entire investment, consisting of three stages, was to be commissioned in August 2020. It was only in December, just before Christmas, that two sections were opened: from the Lubelska junction to Przyczółkowa. In the case of the tunnel near Ursynów, in accordance with the annex to the contract, the time for completion of works was extended until the end of March 2021. The reason was, among other things, a long procedure of obtaining a permit for a road investment. Then the investor declared that the drivers would go through the tunnel in the second quarter of 2021, which was also not met.

From December 22, drivers have at their disposal an over 15-kilometer section of the South Bypass of Warsaw between the Warszawa-Wilanów and Lubelska interchanges along with the new bridge over the Vistula. The route can be accessed through four interchanges: Warszawa-Wilanów, Wał Miedzeszyński, Patriotów and Lubelska. The total cost of the construction of the three sections of S2, forming a part of the Southern Bypass of Warsaw, is approximately PLN 4.6 billion, of which nearly PLN 1.7 billion is the amount of funding from the European Union under the Infrastructure and Environment Operational Program.

POW tunnel near UrsynówKrzysztof Nalewajko / GDDKiA

Main photo source: tvnwarszawa.pl

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