Indian state Uttar Pradesh to build $5.05bn Ganga Expressway

The Government of Uttar Pradesh (UP) in India approved construction of the 600km Ganga Expressway.

Estimated to cost Rs360bn ($5.05bn), the expressway is claimed to be the world’s longest and aims to provide better connectivity of Allahabad with the western districts of UP.

After a state cabinet meeting, chief minister Yogi Adityanath told reporters that the expressway will run from Meerut, heading through Amroha, Badaun, Farrukhabad, Hardoi, Unnao, Rae Bareli, and Pratapgarh before reaching Allahabad.

Hampton Roads Connector selected for $3.3bn HRBT project in Virginia

Hampton Roads Connector Partners was selected by the Virginia state government in the US to complete the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel (HRBT) expansion project.

The $3.3bn fixed-price contract will be formally awarded in April, according to the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT). The project is expected to be completed by November 2025.

Hampton Roads Connector was chosen through competitive procurement, which started in December 2017 and lasted nearly one year.

China building 5G smart highway in Wuhan

Chinese state-owned telecommunication company China Mobile revealed plans to build a 5G smart highway project in Wuhan in Hubei province.

The first 5G smart highway project in the country is currently under construction.

Once complete, the telecommunications company plans to introduce 5G services on the highway, starting with ‘smart toll stations’ that could replace the present equipment and human operators.

UAE launches pilot project for eco-friendly road building materials

The UAE Ministry of Infrastructure Development teamed up with tyre manufacturer Michelin to launch a pilot programme to test environmentally friendly road construction materials.

Under a two-month pilot programme, a national green road network will be constructed using a mixture of recycled rubber and asphalt concrete, reported state news agency WAM.

The project is said to be the first-of-its-kind in the UAE. It is as part of the country’s efforts to promote innovation, achieve sustainability, encourage recycling, and create a national green road network.

Germany opens first electrified highway for trucks

Germany opened its first electrified highway for trucks near Frankfurt as part of the country’s plans to reduce carbon and nitrogen oxides emissions.

The 5km to 6km stretch on the Autobahn (motorway) 5 between Darmstadt and Frankfurt will be tested in both directions until 2022.

Called ‘electrified, innovative heavy traffic on the autobahn’ (Elisa), the project involves five logistics companies testing vehicles in real traffic with hybrid, battery-powered trucks.

Highways England awards first contracts on £8.7bn framework

Highways England signed the first in a series of contracts with supply chain partners to undertake up to £8.7bn of work on England’s motorways and major A-roads.

Construction company Geoffrey Osborne secured a £61.4m contract to deliver a major upgrade to the A46 at Binley in Coventry.

A £52.4m contract was awarded to VolkerFitzpatrick to perform improvements along the A27 near Lewes in East Sussex.

UPS tests self-driving tractor-trailers in Arizona, US

US-based supply chain management company United Parcel Service (UPS) revealed that it is testing self-driving tractor-trailers in Arizona.

The self-driving service commenced in May and follows a minority investment made by UPS venture capital arm in the autonomous driving company TuSimple.

As part of the ongoing testing, the goods are being transported on a North American Freight Forwarding route between Phoenix and Tucson.

US DOT allocates $871.2m to repair roads and bridges

The US Department of Transportation (DOT) allocated $871.2m to repair roads and bridges damaged by storms, floods and other unexpected events.

The Emergency Relief (ER) fund was allotted to the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) Emergency Relief programme.

The money will be used to rebuild roads in 39 states, as well as American Samoa, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

DRIVEN consortium successfully demonstrates autonomous cars in London

The DRIVEN consortium announced that its fleet of autonomous prototype vehicles successfully navigated streets in London, UK.

Fuelled by Oxbotica’s autonomous software, the vehicles operated on public roads around the former Olympic Park in Stratford.

The £13.6m DRIVEN programme, which is partly funded by the UK Government, demonstrated that these self-driving vehicles can safely and smoothly operate under real-life situations.

Hyundai Mobis develops rear-autonomous emergency braking system

South Korea-based Hyundai Mobis developed rear-autonomous emergency braking (R-AEB) technology using ultra short-range radar (USRR).

R-AEB systems generally use ultrasound sensors and cameras. This was the first instance where radar sensors were used in place of ultrasound sensors.

The new technology detects objects behind the car and forcefully stops the vehicle if the driver does not apply the brakes.