4.2 Formulation of Programs
The purpose of this step is to identify intervention options to close the asset performance gaps. These intervention options will comprise the total needs program. It is expected that owing to resource constraints, only a portion of the total needs program will receive funding. To ensure an equitable allocation of resources and to achieve the organisation’s objectives, prioritisation of the total needs program should occur.
The formulation of the total needs program involves applying the following process for each asset performance gap (Austroads 2002a):
- Investment planning involves investigating intervention options including engineering and management solutions such as road use policy initiatives, preventive or periodic maintenance, rehabilitation, reconstruction, construction, education, incentives, or penalties. During this process maintenance works are integrated with capital upgrades to ensure efficient and sufficient investment of funds.
- Investment evaluation involves defining and broadly costing phases of potential projects and identifying the optimal intervention option to close the gap. Evaluation is applied to all programs including the routine maintenance program. Coordination of these programs should be considered, e.g. if rehabilitation, reconstruction or replacement is due then maybe routine maintenance for the same segment can be excluded. This evaluation involves the following:
- To evaluate potential projects, a list of treatment alternatives must be developed. For each treatment considered, a cost needs to be defined, the impact of the treatment on each of the condition indices needs to be defined, and intervention criteria need to be defined for each treatment. Treatment intervention criteria are the set of conditions as defined by the condition indices, the performance curves, and any other pertinent data items under which a particular treatment would be feasible.
- Once the treatment alternatives, the performance prediction models and the condition indices are defined, an AMS can generate a list of maintenance strategies that can be applied to the different road LoS classes and their associated costs. Examples of pavement asset management models include the road deterioration (RD) and works effects models of HDM-4 (PIARC 1999) and Austroads (2007c, 2010a, 2010b, 2010c and 2017).
The total needs program is the final list of projects created from this process.
Budget scenarios define for the asset management model the amount of money that can be spent in any particular year of the analysis. The model uses the allocated money to optimise the network. That is, a single strategy is selected for each of the analysis sections based on the overall benefit to the network as a whole and on the available funds. The result of prioritisation and/or optimisation and funding scenarios will lead to the identification of the works program that will receive funding.
Prioritisation/optimisation and various funding scenarios should act interdependently through this phase and the previous phases (see Section 6). At the same time, the present planning activities may be of such significance to augment the agency’s asset strategies in the current or subsequent planning cycles. Such effects are described by the feedback loop in Figure 2.3.
The following sections highlight the available approaches to maintenance treatment selection, setting maintenance strategies, costing and investment evaluation.