I. Highway Planning, Management, Performance Evaluation & Instrumentation

1. Highway Planning & Management

2. Preparation of Computerized Inventory of Roads for Kothamangalam and Koovappady Block Panchayaths in Ernakulam District (Kerala)
April 2005 to March 2006
(i) National Transportation Planning and Research Centre (NATPAC), Thiruvananthapuram (R)
(ii) Kerala State Council for Science, Technology & Environment (S)


Scope and Objectives

The scope of the study is limited to roads coming under the rural local bodies comprising of Grama Panchayaths, Block Panchayaths and District Panchayaths. The objectives of the study are:

Identification of all sub settlements (wards) within each Grama Panchayath in the study region
Listing of all categories roads passing through the settlements
Inventory of Grama Panchayath roads (roads having a minimum width of six meters that can be developed to motorable standards and a minimum length of 500 metres.);
Preparation of digitized road maps with supporting data for each Grama Panchayath using the GIS format.
Detailed field studies carried out for obtaining information on:
Settlement level data, sub settlement (within each Panchayath) identification, road availability and location of facilities
Road level data- connecting settlements, population benefited, facilities along the road
Road inventory particulars covering length, width, surface type, settlements connected
Road mapping using the base maps (cadastral) provided by the Kerala State Land Use Board
The maps are further modified by Digitizing, Mosaicking, Geo-referencing, Scaling using GIS format and development of attribute tables.
The study aimed at developing a comprehensive spatial database including locations and detailed information about the road network and road junctions, physical attributes like rivers, geographical attributes like ward boundaries and other location-based information like public resources and cultural centres.
The scanned maps are georeferenced using the Survey of India Topo sheets and converted into raster format. These raster files were vectorised in ArcGIS, using different feature classes for each feature type. The feature types incorporated in this work are: Panchayath Boundary, Ward Boundary, Rivers, Panchayath roads, PWD roads, minor roads, Public Utilities, Cultural Centres and important localities. The attribute data for these features are added simultaneously.
The projection parameters – datum and spheroid, were defined for the feature classes. The datum used was Kalianpur 1975 and the Spheroid used was Everest 1975. The feature classes were projected using the projection parameters and a coordinate system. The map projection used was Kalianpur_1975_Zone_43 North.
The projected feature classes were imported to the specific geodatabases created for each Grama Panchayath. The feature classes were used to make thematic maps for further use. In ArcGIS, the attribute information about any feature can be accessed by using the identify option on the feature.
The maps are published using ArcMap environment in ArcGIS, so that they can be distributed and shared into other systems, which do not have the GIS software. The published maps are packaged with the supporting files for data sharing. The packaged data files can be viewed and queried in any system using ArcReader.
Supporting Data
Assessment of settlement level connectivity
Identification of Connected/unconnected settlements
Road schemes required for connectivity improvements
Significance /Utilisation Potential
Development of an authentic spatial data base on Grama Panchayath roads together with supporting information required for the development of plan documents and rural road management system in GIS platform

Usage of this spatial database for selected applications are given below:
The spatial information system developed can be used by anyone as the data stored can be interpreted to suit the users requirements.
The efficiency of existing road network can be evaluated and suitable road improvement measures can be proposed.
The database can be extended to identify and analyse land use / land cover pattern.
The thematic maps can be analysed to identify the Central Business area which can be improved in terms of utilities and administration facilities.
Spatial Buffer Zones can be developed around any specific facility (e.g., Post Office) to estimate the area or population served by the facility, and take appropriate measures, if it is found to be unsatisfactory.
The spatial database can be used for facility mapping of utilities like Banks, ATMs etc in a similar way to assess the sufficiency / deficiency of the facilities in the study area.
By linking the spatial database with traffic and other transportation related data, the existing traffic conditions can be analysed and appropriate management measures can be suggested. Analysis Operations like Shortest Route, Service Area, Closest Facility, Origin–Destination Cost Matrix can be formulated using this information system.
The use of a high-end technology like ArcGIS, can facilitate easy handling of data using a Graphic User Interface (GUI). The creation, storage, management, manipulation and interlinking of data, which forms the basic functions of any GIS, can be performed satisfactorily using ArcGIS in a limited period of time. These facilities are almost impossible using the earlier mapping softwares like AutoCAD.
Updated road details along with settlement level data can be used for the preparation of Road Development Plan required for PMGSY, Bharat Nirman or NABARD funded road development schemes
Reports/ Publications
Reports on of “Computerized Inventory of Roads for Kothamangalam and Koovappady Block Panchayaths in Ernakulam District” – NATPAC (unpublished) 2006.