This paper presents a novel method to use accessibility of the population to basic services of health and education on a service-based optimization of road maintenance and rehabilitation. The methodology expands typical performance-based decision making by considering the total travel time that users in rural locations spend to commute to a hospital or a university. The method reallocates investments in order to minimize levels of surface roughness and total travel time. Travel time considers expected speed from the combination of a set of elements such as type of terrain and pavement surface and its condition. A case study of about 960 km of strategic roads in the province of El Oro in Ecuador was used to demonstrate the application of the method. It was found that a massive campaign of paving should be undertaken in order to both improve average road conditions and the accessibility to basic services. The system dedicated about half of the budget to convert gravel roads into paved ones and the other half for maintenance and rehabilitation of the existing network. It was also found that a minimum budget (US$6,000,000) to achieve good results from a mere condition perspective was not enough and that an extra 33% financial resources were required to achieve the accessibility goals of reducing aggregated strategic-network travel time. Future research should consider the ability to realign a road within the decision-making system as well as the adaptation of this approach to urban areas with intersections experiencing congestion.
condition, interventions, management, pavements, travel time
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