Technical visits

42 technical visits took place from Tuesday 18th to Friday 21st morning

Each congress participants was able to take part in one of the visits.

A description of the different sites of the technical visits can be found in the special issue of "Revue générale des Routes" no 860, September 2007: Centenary of PIARC World Road Congress, Visits to today's French know-how.

Sustainable mobility

V1 A fourth pedestrian footbridge in Paris (18th am, 19th am, 20th am, 21st am)

The Paris-Left Bank mixed development zone is a rapidly changing district. To connect it with the existing green area of the Parc de Bercy, a 37th Parisian bridge, given over entirely to soft modes of transport, was built across the Seine.
A light metallic structure comprised of a stretched arch and a convex suspended section, its single span of 304m has linked the two banks of the river since July 2006.
The visit offered a presentation of both the technical project and the urban development objectives which the bridge meets.

Website :
Visit organizer: The City of Paris.


V2 City of Paris: a tramway to replace two car lanes (18th am, 19th am, 20th am)

The installation of a tramway on the road which encircles Paris at the end of 2006 offered the opportunity to favor soft modes of transport. Whilst remaining in harmony with the architecture and environment, this modern development contributes to an improvement in the quality of surroundings for local residents.
After a presentation of the project, the visitors boarded a tram and visited different sites which are remarkable in terms of their development.

Website :
Visit organizer: The City of Paris.


Safety and operations

V3 The dynamic use of urban motorways (18th am, 19th am)

Each day, 17 million motorists use the 850 km of urban motorway of the greater Parisian area. The information provided to each motorist enables that individual to optimize his or her itinerary in real time. Participants in this visit discovered the processing of data at an information and traffic control center. They then visited a motorway in a bus equipped with an information system which demonstrated a technology used for the dynamic management of traffic flows in real time.

Website :
Visit organizer: The Ministry of Transport.

V4 The A86 Tunnel: the longest two-level superimposed tunnel in the world (18th pm, 19th pm, 20th pm)

This tunnel closes the loop of the A86 Motorway, the second Parisian ring road. At 10 km in length, it is comprised of two superimposed levels of traffic in both directions, reserved to light vehicles.
The visit provided the opportunity to discover the first section of the reduced-width tunnel before it is opened. Its many items of safety equipment were presented.

Website :
Visit organizer: Cofiroute.

V5 The A14: intelligent transport systems working for urban decongestion (18th am/pm, 19th am/pm, 20th am/pm, 21st am/pm)

The A14 Motorway is a Paris region urban motorway especially designed to solve a traffic congestion problem.
It has very high-performance operating systems and, in particular,
a real-time traffic management tool using an intelligent transport system technology which was presented to visitors.
It is comprised of a number of structures (tunnels, cut and cover sections and viaducts) the architectural quality of which is a guarantee of successful sound and visual protection for surrounding residents.

Website :
Visit organizer: Sanef.

V6 The A5: optimized management offering safety and high-level service (18th am, 19th am, 20th am, 21st am)

During this technical visit, the modern toll payment system of the Éprunes toll station and its very advanced equipment were presented. This toll station is also a remarkable piece of architecture.
The visit was completed by a stop at the Sécurodrome, a unique site in France and Europe designed to provide road safety education to a broad public (companies, schools, etc.).
An exhibition, a workshop and simulators at this location were just some of the tools for visitors to discover.

Website :
Visit organizer: APRR.


Infrastructure quality

V7 Mobile structures: the highest lift bridge in Europe and demountable roadways (18th, 19th, 20th full day)

In the morning, participants visited the construction site of Rouen's 6th bridge over the Seine (1). This bridge is above all one link in the bypassing of this urban area and will carry 50,000 vehicles per day and reduce pollution and disturbances in the city centre.
The necessity to enable the passage of passenger ships and large yachts as far as the city center resulted in the design of a lift bridge of 86m in height and spanning 100m which will be raised to a height of 55m thirty times per year. In the afternoon, the participants discovered "urban demountable roadway" on site.

This is an innovative process using temporary roadway to enable a reduction in the number of times work is performed on the same surface during network construction and maintenance.

Website :
Visit organizers: Eiffage-Travaux Publics for the lift bridge and the Municipality of St-Aubin-lès-Elbeuf for the demountable roadway.

V8 Meaux Viaduct (19th am)

The Meaux Viaduct is the first such construction for which a steel tube web structure has been used, a patented combination of metal and pre-stressed concrete offering very high mechanical efficiency. Its exceptional size makes the viaduct the heaviest to be installed by pushing with 54,000 tonnes displaced at the time of the last operation. The function of this patented process and the pushing techniques used were explained to visitors.

Website :
Visit organizer: Razel.

V9 A motorway concession construction site: the A19 (18th, 19th, 20th full day)

The A19 Motorway (101 km), which will be completed in 2009, is one of the links in the major east-west transport axis.
After a presentation of the financial arrangements of the operation within the framework of a concession and the engineering aspects of the project, the participants visited the construction in progress with special attention given to safety and environmental protection measures taken during the works.

Website :
Visit organizer: Arcour.

V10 Monitoring the condition of roadways (19th am)

The participants in this visit were able to see equipment for inspecting roadways, performing checks and determining the composition of bitumen products to enable the detection of defective areas of the roadways and improve scheduling of their maintenance. VECTRA invited visitors to come to discover its materials equipments in the exceptional site of the castle of Rambouillet (Bergerie Nationale - National Sheepfold).

Website :
Visit organizer: Vectra.

V11 Low temperature coatings (According to sites)

Low temperature coatings manufactured and used at under 100 °C are proposed as an alternative manufacturing process which is less polluting and more energy efficient. Participants in this visit were presented with the process and the research protocol.
They then saw on-site demonstrations.

Website :
Visit organizer: Eiffage-Travaux Publics.

V12 Historic road surfaces (19th am/pm)

Technology serving history or how to make what is old new again. Participants visited the worksite for the renovation of the Place carrée, the main square of the Château de Versailles.
With the works undertaken using contemporary methods, the paving must keep the authenticity of its appearance.

Website :
Visit organizer: Eurovia.


Research and innovations

V13 Laboratoire Central des Ponts et Chaussées, Nantes Center (18th am)

The LCPC is the main French research laboratory in the area of civil engineering and road infrastructure and has a staff of 600.
The Nantes site is host to most of the LCPC's large research equipment, such as the roadway circular test track, the geotechnical centrifuge and the reference track for road surface characteristics and road-vehicle interactions. The visit offered a discovery of different items of equipment and research programmes.

Website :
Visit organizer: LCPC.

V14 The MOV'EO competitiveness cluster (20th pm, 21st am)

The federating theme of the "world class" competitiveness cluster, which brings a number of organizations together is safety and the protection of the environment in the automotive area.
It is supported by a scientific complex for transport system experimentation and testing. The presentations of projects were complemented by demonstrations. Congress attendees boarded prototype vehicles which demonstrate research works, in particular, concerning speed limitation and driver assistance systems.

Website :
Visit organizer: INRETS.

V16 Eurovia Research Center (19th full day)

Inaugurated in November, 2003, this research centre covers an area of 4,000 m2 including 1,900 m2 of laboratories.
It has an exceptional array of equipment with 100 testing machines.
The Eurovia range of innovative products and processes were presented on site to participants: Noxer® noise barriers and pollution-eliminating road surfaces, aspha-min® warm mix asphalt and aggregate from the recycling of household refuse incineration clinker (HRIC), etc. The opportunity to discover what the roads of tomorrow will be made from

Website :,4.aspx
Visit organizer: Eurovia.