KPI of the Day – State Government: # Highway network length
Measures the length of the total highway network in a country. A highway is a high-speed road traffic corridor with at least partial control of access.
To indicate the maturity of the highway transportation infrastructure, as highway network construction leads to the development of a country, improving its international ties and allowing fast accessibility to its main regions and cities.
Highway construction projects are generally part of a larger transport infrastructure development program, planned to be developed in several stages over a defined period of time.
As an example, the Hungarian freeway development program was planned for the period 2007 – 2015, for each stage of the project being allocated a certain budget and a defined number of freeway kilometers that have to be finished.
The highway investment can be financed in different ways, the two most common ones being state investment (public procurement) and concession system (Public Private Partnership – PPP).
Roads pay a paramount role in the economic health and development of a region or a country, since they can greatly facilitate the transportation of passengers and goods nationally and internationally. High quality roads have a strong positive effect on transport and delivery cost, as well as on gas emissions.
Building and maintaining the national highway network should be a priority for every developed nation, since roads are often the single largest publicly owned national asset, adding an average of 3% to 15% to a country’s $ GDP. Furthermore, at global level, traffic volumes, both of passengers and freight, continue to grow, increasing thereby the need of large, well-developed freeway networks.
For these reasons, positive results for this KPI will have beneficial consequences for a country’s safety and security, environment, economy, integration, accessibility and social inclusion.
In order to preserve and further develop the existing highway network, common practices include the following:
- Carefully planning the development of new highways through economic calculations of the benefits incurred;
- Considering social implications before investing in the construction of new highway routes;
- Allocating funds on a regular basis for road infrastructure maintenance so as to properly preserve existing highway networks.