Bulgaria: Alarming state of the infrastructure

A great deal of Bulgarian roads have not been touched since their creation in the 1970s, or have undergone a major overhaul 20 years ago.

40% of the roads in the Republican road network in Bulgaria are in poor condition. This finding was made not by an unhappy driver, but by the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works (MRDPW). It was done within the framework of the parliamentary control by the Minister Nikolay Nankov. In response to parliamentary questions, he provided data on nine areas that are indicative of the whole country. Barricade summarizes the MRDPW statistics and publish it below. From Nankov’s replies, it is also clear that much of the degraded infrastructure has not been repaired since its creation 40 years ago. Another “news” is that…

There is no money for reconstruction

MRDPW divides three types of roads according to their current status – good, medium and bad. The third type is the one on which people break their cars – there is more holes, than asphalt. It is to be expected that part of the roads classified as “average” are also in poor condition, but in the current statistics we will only refer to those identified as “bad”.

In Pleven, the situation is tragic. From 794 km of the republican road network 352 km are of the last type, i.e. they are in poor condition. MRDPW acknowledges that there hasn’t been any major overhaul since the 1990s, while some roads have not been touched since their construction in socialist times.

In the Vidin region from 615 km state roads 140 km are in poor condition. And there major overhaul has not been done in the last 20 years.

In the capital and the are near by the things should be different… But they are not. From the 1500 km roads in the Sofia-region and Sofia-city in very bad condition are 629 km of them. In fact, 170 km of motorways and connections to them are also included in the total kilometers. If we get them out of the equation, it turns out that half of the tracks are in bad conditions.

In Veliko Tarnovo region from 937 km of the Republican road network 336 km are in poor condition. There are even 5 km without an asphalt pavement. Interesting, is a vignette paid for them?!

In the region of Varna from 718 km road, the “hole to hole” sections are 238 km. The percentage of the bad parts is about 30, which gives the region a flourishing state compared to others. Stara Zagora is a direct oasis. From a total length of 883 km, “only” 220 are in poor condition.

In the other pole is Pernik. From 575 km total roads, over half of them have huge problems. The MRDPW recognizes that a significant part of them has not undergone a major repair since commissioning, which was 40 years ago. In the Rousse area, from 472 km of national roads are quite badly 215 km. They need preventive repair and rehabilitation.

What is total statistics? Here it is – from 6494 total kilometers in the nine districts above, 2500 km, or 40% of the roads, are from the “car crusher” type. The situation is even worse, because the data doesn’t include the fourth-class network, which is municipal. And there the existence of normal roads is mythical.

Despite the information, carefully provided by the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works (MRDPW), concrete actions to repair the roads should not be expected. For example, in the current year only 21 km of the Vidin area will be repaired. In Pleven, this year there will be rehabilitation of 35 km.

Nankov’s response to the road Zlataritsa – Djulyunitsa near Veliko Tarnovo is curious. It’s a 16-kilometer road, one of the most terrible in the whole country – almost without asphalt, with huge traps, with bent down branches of untouched surrounding trees. Local residents have repeatedly protested about the tragic state of the road. Nankov’s answer is that there is no money for a complete renovation. In fact, only 6.5 million levs are needed.

Infrastructure is increasingly becoming an intolerable problem for residents of hundreds of cities. In the last year, protests against road holes were made in Northwest Bulgaria, the Rhodopes, the municipalities of Polski Trambesh, Pavlikeni, Dobrich and many other places. Discontent will be exacerbated by the approaching local elections in 2019. Statistics show that people have the full right to resent.

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