The Centre has written to all ministries and states proposing mandatory common 'ducts' and 'posts' across all linear infrastructure in urban and industrial areas, housing projects and all central and state government development works.
Common duct refers to a common structure installed underground for public utilities ranging from electric and communication cables to water, sewage and gas pipelines. Common post is an overground structure for housing public utilities and usually includes a smart pole.
In an October 12 memo issued to state chief secretaries, central ministries and departments, the communications ministry has circulated 'Draft standards for Common Duct and Post Infrastructure along Highways and Public Pathways', drawn up by a multi-stakeholder committee. The document suggests that central and state governments look at phased installation of common ducts across road lengths where frequent installation and maintenance of underground facilities is required.
Why Common Duct?
The trigger for the move is the diggings that both intra-city and inter-city roads are put through for installation of underground and overground infrastructure for public utilities. There is a "staggering waste of public resources in relaying the roads" due to the varying investment cycles of different utility providers, notes the communication.
MAKING IT HAPPEN
The draft policy guidelines sent out to all states envisage a Common Ducts and Posts Development Agency to coordinate creation of common ducts and posts and a common duct and post manager responsible for the day-to-day approvals, cost apportionment, safety inspections and repair. The plan for installation of common ducts and posts must be included at the time of project formulation itself and the cost shared, the memo says.
The Open Magazine of India by Artmotion Network (https://magazine.armotion.com/)