‘Disposable’ Road: 2-Month-Old Road Already in Disrepair

Construction workers repaving recently paved roads in Kaili city of Guizhou province in China.

From NetEase:

“Disposable road” appears in Guizhou Kaili

Not long ago, Kaili city of Guizhou province paved several sections of road along Ningbo Road, Shaoshan road, Beijing Road, etc. resulting in the road surface looking completely new. Recently, city residents discovered that these newly paved roads were crumbling, developing potholes, and other similar phenomena. Kaili city’s traffic department responded by saying that not long ago, Kaili city held an important event and completed the road repaving project before the major event at the request of the city’s leadership. “The time allotted for the work, combined with bad weather and other reasons, resulted in the road manifesting these problems.” Photo is of construction workers mending the sections of road where problems have appeared.

In Kaili city of Guizhou province in China, a two month old paved asphalt road is already crumbling and disintegrating.

When this reporter saw the serious “crumbling” road surface phenomenon, there was a lot of noise as cars drove over, and with sand and stones occasionally flying onto the sidewalk. “How is this paved asphalt at all, this is clearly just gravel,” a passerby said after seeing this reporter take out a camera out to take photos. Photo is of the seriously disintegrating road surface.

In Kaili city of Guizhou province in China, a two month old paved asphalt road is already crumbling and disintegrating.

City resident Miss Li says there are dinging sounds on the undercarriage when driving on Beijing West Road, which is a situation that hasn’t happened on Kaili’s main roads in many years. “At the beginning of this year, we were all very happy when we saw the government paving the roads, and would avoid disturbing the road construction crews, but we never imagined the fixed roads would be like this”, said Uncle Liu in consternation. Photo is of the seriously disintegrating road surface.

In Kaili city of Guizhou province in China, a two month old paved asphalt road is already crumbling and disintegrating.

Taxi driver Yang says this kind of municipal road is not only ugly but also difficult to drive on. “I don’t get it, how could a recently paved road already have these kind of quality problems?” Yang said. Another city resident said the asphalt paving of Ningbo Road and other roads was done to welcome an important event, very hastily, so the quality problems may have something to do with this. “Roads get better as they are fixed/paved, but with Beijing West Road like this, it is as if it has gone backwards by 10-20 years,” a city resident said.

In Kaili city of Guizhou province in China, a two month old paved asphalt road is already crumbling and disintegrating.

Other than serious “crumbling”, potholes and other phenomena are also appearing on the roads.

In Kaili city of Guizhou province in China, a two month old paved asphalt road is already crumbling and disintegrating.

Photo is of potholes on the roads.

Construction workers repaving recently paved roads in Kaili city of Guizhou province in China.

Photo is of construction workers mending the sections of road where problems have appeared.

Construction workers repaving recently paved roads in Kaili city of Guizhou province in China.

Photo is of construction workers mending the sections of road where problems have appeared.

Comments from NetEase:

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Don’t need to guess, the kickback that was taken was too high, and the money actually used [on the road] wasn’t enough.


Can the director of the traffic department also be disposable?

反对派临时跟贴局 [网易河北省石家庄市网友]:

The LD will definitely say it is natural damage from the rain!

网易北京市网友: (responding to above)

What isn’t blamed on nature in China? Farmers have lower harvests, blame it on nature. Can’t sell, blame it on nature. Price has gone up, blame it on nature. How come they didn’t say the price of oil is too high?


Definitely corruption! Typical tofu dregs [shoddy] construction! Who will take responsibility?


I’m from Kaili and seeing this road surface makes me really sad. I don’t know where the conscience of the managers and workers of this road paving project. This road surface was completely repaved before the Chinese New Year and just one to two months later problems have appeared throughout the entire city’s roads. I hope the leadership of the relevant departments will strictly investigate and give the entire city’s residents an explanation.


At first look, the roads have gone bad, but look deeper and it is the traffic department that has gone bad!

jkjkchen [网易广东省深圳市网友]:

Must’ve been caused by temporary workers.


This is simply an “image project” [construction or repairs done only to improve superficial appearances], which shows that this kind of city leadership isn’t good leadership either, not caring about the real and substantial. If he is allowed to stay in his position, he will only waste the country and the people’s resources.

weilitao [网易广东省揭阳市网友]:

Everyone knows what’s going on in this kind of thing.


They’re just afraid that if they built/paved to last a hundred years in other countries, the road crews would lose their jobs!

ant2001 [网易山东省网友]:

So many roads are like this, bad after repairs, repaired because they’re bad, we’re just a joke to foreigners. A waste of resources.

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  • A GUY


    • A GUY

      Uhh that was the most hollow victory ever.

      • glcn

        no, i think you’re in the green.

  • robin yates

    asphalt or tarmac has to be laid HOT! If not the result is what you see,,, failure

    • Ryo

      Another problem though is a LOT of overweight dump trucks drive on them. Some carry as much as 3 times their max rated capacity. That also screws up the roads.

      • Xiongmao

        Now that you mention it, why do these trucks and their (generally) shitty drivers seem to get a free pass on every law they break? They are horribly overloaded -which is incredibly dangerous to others as well as making them incapable of stopping in an emergency, their lights are broken and reflectors are covered in dirt and mud. As late as yesterday I was inches from driving into one of those on the express way while it was doing 20 in the 110 lane AND being overloaded with stone. Also, they drive way too fast generally, don’t keep their lanes, haven’t got their load correctly fastened and extended loads are NEVER marked properly. Saw a guy on a scooter almost get his head chopped off because a truck was carrying metals rods extending 3-4 metres out back with none of the markers required by law. I really wish the police would do their jobs more often.

        • Roger

          I agree, I drive in Shanghai and I see the same thing. I think it’s the general attitude in China, that there’s too many people so there’s no point in regulating laws that everyone wants to break. It’s such a common scene for people to just blatantly break traffic rules in front of cops. I see it all the time, people doing U-turns where or driving in scooter or emergency lanes RIGHT IN FRONT of the cop, and they don’t bat an eye.

          Until China starts to regulate common laws and not just those that they can receive kick backs, there’s not much hope for a “harmonious society”.

  • Ryo

    2 years ago, most of the major roads here in Guangzhou were repaved due to the 2010 Asian Games. A lot of those roads already have pot holes, cracks, and some roads are sinking in certain places.

    A lot of run down buildings (those with no elevators) that were near major highways and roads were refaced. 2 years later, some are already falling apart and look dirty due to rain run off.

    I’m sure a lot of “officials” got rich off the cheap materials and workmanship that was used in the project. Of course they’d charge full price. But this pretty much happens everywhere in the world. Not just China.

    • Derek Xu

      Typical Chinese construction. Wait until the high rises in Shanghai start falling over due to faulty (or non-existant) rebar.

  • Dat Ankle

    It probably has to do with cheap material that were used, thats the only explanation I can think of for a newly fixed road to be crumbling in just 2 month old. The gravel kinda tells the low budge situation to me.

  • pirx

    How about a little quality in the heart of China?

    In all fairness, the roads in eastern China are largely in really good shape, especially considering that state-owned trucking companies are running grossly overloaded trucks on these roads, up to 3 times the legally permissible weight, with cargo from one state-owned company to another state-owned company.

    These roads obviously can take a lot of pain.


    • 平凡人

      The outer ring road in some major eastern cities are also failing. We all know that trucks are not allowed on these ring roads, so why are they failing? One good example is the Northern outer ring road in Suzhou, feels like roller coaster ride. I do agree that overloading is a problem, however, it is not the only problem.

      • Blars

        Yup, Suzhou northern ring road was only opened a couple of years ago and is already in a terrible state and it’s not because of overloaded trucks coz almost no truck drive there. Just shitty workmanship.

  • Castro

    Send the ‘Floating Officials’ to inspect !
    They will restore Harmony !

  • Rod

    One of my favorite stories to tell is that one day I was driving my scooter home and almost crashed because I hit a pothole. When I started cursing about the amount the horrible state of the roads here my gf at the time said, “Of course a road has potholes”, as if she had never seen a road without one some.

  • hanyucha

    This is a classic example of what economists call Rent Seeking. The local government allocates a job to a company and gives them say 1,000 yuan for materials. The company goes out and buys substandard materials worth only 600 yuan, and then keep the 400. Hence the road breaks down sooner. If the government just gave then the materials instead, and then made the workers accountable for their work, then this kind of thing wouldn’t happen.

    The irony is, that when the Chinese government helps African nations with their development, they never give them cash, just materials and manpower, removing any possibility of corruption or rent-seeking. It is a shame they cannot apply the same standard at home.

    • Wil

      Chinese government contract out project to large engineering firms for oversea projects. On the other hand, these shoddy roads were put together by some fat bellied local officials hiring migrant labour.

  • hanyucha

    Song of the Article:

    Hit the Road Jack

  • Peye

    Looks to me that this an other-one of those BS stories cooked up to to run down what is happaning in China. The pictures show that one half of the road has been finished paved and now workers are peparing the other half for the final topping. One can clearly see the break where the original top layer or base layer has been frazed off. (2-3cm). I also believe that some of the nerds commenting here have not a clue what is going on in the world and are hell bend to stir something up. Besides that problems arise everywhere ,China not being the only place.

    • angryman

      Butthurt nationalist troll is butthurt.

  • On the contrary – it’s good.
    Drivers will be more careful when they drive bad roads.
    Bad roads – less traffic accidents and no flying cops!

  • dr love

    My wife is from Heilongjiang and she told me about a strip of road built by the Japanese during their occupation. The road is still in great condition to this day, and the abutting sections of road built by China has gone through continuous repair. Although they love to bash the Japanese every chance they get, they admire their road building.

    On a different note, how funkin’ hard is it to build a road these days?

    • Tommy

      Many bridges built by the Japanese are still in good shape also. China needs more people who think about three decades in the future and not just three months. Someday, someday…

      • Derek Xu

        There is no doubt that Japanese make the best products and the best wives.

    • Harland

      There is a bridge in Ningbo built by Germans in the 30s, and it is still in excellent condition, and in daily use as one of the city’s busiest thoroughfares. The Japanese tried to bomb it during the war, but missed. The Ningbonese are proud of their bridge and won’t tear it down.

  • Ben

    I will concur with what Yates said.

    The way that asphalt is failing is indicative of it being laid to cold. Either the trucks had to make too long of a trip from the supplier, or they waited in line at the construction site too long. Or they waited too long to roll it after it was laid. Or they did not use adiquit rollers to pack it after it was laid.

    Or a combination of all the above.

    The stuff has to be above a certain temp when you dump the truck into the paver. And the rollers have to be following right up behind. Once the stuff hits the ground it starts cooling quickly. And you have just a short time to pack it before it gets to cold. If the rollers start falling behind, then let the asphalt sit on the truck. It cools down slower when it’s on the truck being held in a big mass. If the trucks cool down too much before you can dump them, then send them back to the supplier to dump their load and get it reheated and come back again.

  • Jess

    Sometimes I wonder if Chinese construction projects are built for the short-term. It seems that if something isn’t ultramodern, then it’ll inevitably be torn down in a decade or two, even if it’s designed to last three hundred years.

    • Tommy

      You notice the sidewalks are mostly bricks placed on mud? How long do you think something like that is supposed to last? You notice the mass of unskilled labor who are hired to pry up the bricks and place new, slightly less chipped bricks down?

  • Peye

    Dr.Love could it be that the strech of road built by the Japanese, as your wife is claiming, was paved with the sweat of Chinese workers and the blood of Chinese people killed by the occupation forces. So cut the B(ull)S(hit)and get real.

    • Derek Xu

      So does that mean roads built during the Great Leap Forward would be super high quality??

      • theelemur
    • angryman

      If worker sweat and blood was such good building materials nothing in China would ever collapse or fail.

  • themig

    faun! please post more worthy articles likeChina Mobile Chairman Wang Jianzhou said Chinese companies investing in foreign countries are systematically overcharged in acquisitions

    and the chinese netizens fury against such actions by foreigners and incompetent Chi-com businesses

  • Derek Xu

    It’s a good thing China cannot export roads.

    • lonetrey

      LOL ikr?

  • Dan Mueller

    I lived in Anshun, Guizhou and this happened twice. They totally redid the road, dug it down and redid each of the levels and each time, within six months it was horrible again. I think some of it has to do with cost savings and other parts of it has to do with the kind of trucks that are on the roads, including the huge coal trucks, many buses and other large semis.

  • pi arr squared

    Only to the lowest bidder! That’s why roads are shit

  • 平凡人

    Road construction is not a child’s play. A good base layer with good bearing capacity is necessary with relevant layers of sub-base and subgrade prior to laying the asphalt.
    The number of layers and design is very much dependent on the soil conditions which can be determine with soil tests after a number of bore holes are taken from the site.
    Looking at the pictures above, the problem could be the foundation itself, not the asphalt layer. Thus just trmming off the top layer of asphalt and replacing it will not solve the problem.
    China has many Engineers, many good ones and many bad ones; the gap is just too wide. Most of the money allocated to road construction has gone into someone’s pocket. I am used to such situations here; i.e. new roads failing.

  • staylost

    Similar stuff goes on in North America. Construction companies can make roads that can last for decades, but they always get the cheaper budget so that some politician can mark the money for some sort of self aggrandizement. Some roads made in the 90s still don’t need repair because they were built properly. Most need repair much more often because decision makers rarely think about the long term cost.

  • Mop

    Waste of time and money just to produce this kind of shit. What a shame.

  • John

    China has a great infrastructure, that here and there construction was too fast is understandable. If you think that the roads in the West are that much better, then go and have a look at them or better go and have a look in India, you going to wish you were back in China. Me for one, I will stay in China, I don’t even want to go back to the West.
    Where is the time that Chinese people were proud on their achievements.

    • Derek Xu

      What a stupid person you are, being proud of China shit quality instead of trying to improve it.

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  • Lord Stanley

    It looks like not enough bitumen was used in preparing the asphalt. Bitumen is a petroleum product, like tar. When heated, it melts, and acts as a binder, or glue, holding together the gravel and sand that forms asphalt.

  • Fman

    Hey at least “made in China” is always consistent!

  • Mao’s Dong

    Made In China

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