PROJECT TITLE: Extension to 4 lanes of the road between Gate7 and the junction with the objective “Road Bridge at km 0+540 of the Danube Black Sea Canal” (CDMN Bridge) with the road connecting Gate 9 and Gate 8 to the North area of Constanta Port.
I. Site description
Located on the Western coast of the Black Sea at 179 nM ofthe Bosporus Strait and at 85 nM of Sulina Branch, where the Danube flows into the sea, Constanta Port covers a total area of 3,926 ha, of which 1,313 ha ofland and 2,613 ha of water. Constanta Port has an annual operation capacity of approximately 120 million tons, being served by 156 berths, out of which 140 are operational. The total length of the piers is 29.83 km and the depths vary between 7 and 19 m.
The vehicle and pedestrian access into Constanţa Port is made through 10 access gates, located both in the northern and in the southernpart of the port, serving the population coming from areas and neighbourhoods of Constanţa and people coming from other localities or regions through directconnection, for example, with the Sun’s Motorway.
The level of using the 10 access variants into the Constanţa Port is determined by the specificity of the gates, by their operation status, as well as by the capacity of the allowed vehicles. In addition, the criteria related to proximity and accessibility have led to significant differences ofthe traffic recorded at the 10 access gates.
II. Necessity and opportunity of the proposed investment objective
At present, in the northern area of Constanta Port Gate 7 isthe only access point for heavy goods traffic. In times of high freight trafficin Port of Constanta, the traffic registered at Gate 7 is experiencing considerable increases, while congestion of port access routes as well astraffic jams are recorded.
Thus, in identifying the best solution for the prevention of these problems was taken into consideration the variant that Gate 9 should take over part of the traffic related to Gate 7.
Gate 9 is available for entry and exit of persons and istransited by freight vehicles, with or without freight, and inert waste transport vehicles in the western filling area of 100 berths.
During the 2017 agricultural campaign, access points in theport area for freight transport vehicles with or without freight were the following:
- Gate 9 – entry for all grain transport vehicles;
- Gate 7 – entry for all vehicles, with or without cargo,other than grain transport;
- Gate 7 – exit for all vehicles with or without cargo
Considering that Constanta Port is the main transit gate for freight transport and taking into account the congestion of access routes and traffic jams, in the summer of 2017 the decision was taken to implement an access procedure for freight transport vehicles, with or without cargo, applicableto Gates 7 and 9.
The procedure was made available to operators of grain terminals, carriers and drivers of heavy goods vehicles.
Yearly, the agricultural campaign and traffic determined by commercial operations make a significant contribution to the increase in the total number of accesses registered at Gates 7 and 9, so that during the summer season there are more than 100,000 units recorded through the two gates compared to the previous 3-month interval.
As for the individual traffic fluctuations for both Gate 7 and Gate 9, summer traffic and the introduction of the truck access procedure have led to substantial changes in the number of vehicles crossing the two gates. For Gate 7, the values recorded in the May-August period to entry sense in the port, respect the seasonal growth trend, while much higher values on the exit sense are due to the indication that all vehicles, with or without cargo, use this gate as a way out during the agricultural campaign.
By noting that the port administration is developing a4-lane extension project of the road between Gate 7 and the junction of the objective “road bridge at km 0+540 of the Danube-Black Sea Canal” with the roadlinking Gate 9 and Gate 8 to the North of Port of Constanta, we consider it appropriate to strengthen the position of Gate 9 as an important access pointfor heavy traffic in the northern area of Constanta Port and to achieve some auto streams with distinct and unique entry and exit senses to/from the northern area of Constanta Port for each gate of access, namely Gate 7 and Gate 9.
Identified problems regarding the transport within the Constanţa Port:
- limited number of port access gates for freight traffic.Thus, for Constanta North Port where most port operators carry out their activity, there is only one gate, i.e. Gate 7, with access to heavy vehicles, and for Constanta South Port, near Agigea locality, only Gate no. 14;
- stationary heavy vehicles on the internal roads of the port, especially in the grain harvest season, there being no correlation between the pace of arrival of grain-bearing vehicles and the rate at whichthey are unloaded in terminals;
- lack of parking spaces for heavy vehicles;
- unjustified parking in the port of empty vehicles.
Light and heavy traffic analysis:
Car access to Constanta Port is controlled and access permission is obtained through two distinct charging modes: an entry permit paid in advance or buying a gate ticket when entering the port.
Considering the fact that during the last two years there was a certain cyclicality of the weight of the vehicles that enter the portwithout having a permit (by buying a gate ticket), respectively the period of February, April, June, resulting in the following hypotheses:
- The share of vehicles accessing Gate 7 through the purchase of the gate ticket varies monthly between 10 and 42%
- A monthly average of 24.3% (out of total accesses) was determined for vehicles buying a gate ticket
- The share of vehicles in the total of the traffic buying tickets at Gate 7 is approximately 3.1%
- By reporting this percentage to total accesses through Gate 7, we can estimate a monthly average of 1,824 vehicles.
III. Correlation with other investment objectives
Electronic application dedicated to freight traffic
In order to streamline traffic and decongestion the roads both within the port and adjacent areas, the port administration aims to develop an online application available on mobile devices (phones, tablets,etc.). This app will serve car transporters, port operators and port authorities alike.
Basically, the port operator waiting for the arrival offreight trucks will allocate a number to each vehicle, depending on some internal or external factors. It will also be able to pass through the application various information of interest to drivers.
Developing this application will bring benefits to all parties involved:
- Truck drivers will know in advance the situation in the port, have up-to-date traffic data, and will be able to better plan the route if they need to stop on the road, depending on the time interval expected in the operating terminal, etc.
- Port operators will be better able to plan their operations, their volume and order, will have better control over the cargo to port
- Port authorities and traffic police will be able to perform more efficient traffic management based on realistic situations and realistic forecasts.
The app will also allow the port administration to fill in the auto traffic data database that is currently unavailable. The application will allow to highlight the truck loading/unloading operations automatically by leaving the terminal, with the signing and handing over of the cargo documents, without the need for the CN APM SA Constanţa personnel to intervene.
Another benefit that this app will bring is that of easing the payments, by paying the entry fee using modern online banking methods.
Besides the advantages of economic, financial and operational nature, we can also mention the ones that refer to the safety and security of the port, namely the possibility to integrate into the application some equipment mounted to gates allowing the automatic recognition of the registration number, the facial recognition, etc.
For the implementation of the system and its smooth functioning, it will be necessary to implement a specific working procedure whereby carriers, port operators and authorities will have access to this virtual platform, which will be connected to the Port Community System.
System of electronic information panels with variable messages
In 2018, procurement procedures for an electronic information panels system with variable messages were launched.
Two electronic panels will be located at points of special road interest, namely the area of the Gate 7 and the junction of the objective “Road Bridge at km 0+540 of the Danube – Black Sea Canal” with the road linking between Gate 9 and Gate 8 having as main objectives the streamlining of car traffic inside the port and increasing of traffic safety. A third panel will beplaced in the Gate 1 area.
IV. Brief description of the investment objective
Proposed works within the project:
- Construction of an underpath roadway separated from theexisting roundabout, crossing the railways and the existing road, having in the terminus point a new round about (“roundabout no. 1”), where the “sorting” ofcars will be made to Gates 7 and 9.
- Rehabilitation of the existing two-lane road outside theport between Gates 7 and 9 and the creation of an additional lane in the portentry direction to the Gate 8 area
- Making a two-lane road inside the port, between Gate 9 and Gate 7, generally using the existing roadways of the technological roads
- Making a roundabout called “roundabout no. 3” aftercrossing through Gate 9, and at the intersection of this road with the existing road in the port of the Gate 7 area, the location of a new roundabout called“roundabout no. 2”
- Rehabilitation of existing access/exit roads through Gate7 and Gate 9
- Parking inside the port, at Gate 7 entrance
- The location of two electric information panels with variable messages at major road points of interest, respectively the area of the Gate 7 and the junction of the objective “Road Bridge at km 0+540 of the Danube-Black Sea Canal” with the road that connects between Gate 9 and Gate 8, having as main objectives the streamlining of the car traffic inside the port andthe increase of traffic safety.
By applying the access procedure, it was ensured the existence of free access ways for intervention/emergency response/exceptional situations and emergency medical assistance as well as the achievement of a high level of safety of the car traffic together with the efficient administration and the protection of road and environmental infrastructure.
At the same time, during the access procedure in Constanta Port, information was provided regarding the parking places for sorting and distribution to the grain terminals, 6 parking areas with access to the main operators were identified, as well as 3 parking lots with over 70 parking places. The good results obtained in the maximum of 40 days of application of the access procedure provisions in 2017, evidenced by the massive reduction in thenumber of road events produced in the port areas served by Gates 7 and 9, together with the conclusions drawn from the studies on the traffic registered at the two access points revealed that the implementation of the unique ways ofentering Gate 9 and Gate 7 will contribute to the harmonization of the freight transport logistics aspects in Constanta Port and to the fluidity of traffic in the area of Gate 7, and in the future it will take on a significant percentage of the car traffic coming from the southern area of Constanta County, traffic which is currently being trafficked to other access gates in view of the heavytraffic volume in the area.
Unquestionable proof of the benefits of implementing the access procedure in the proper conduct of traffic is the port administration’s decision to reintroduce the unique ways of entering Gate 9 and exiting to Gate7 during the summer season 2018.
The implementation of the access procedure and the unique ways of entering and exiting Gate 9 and Gate 7 proved to be very useful in practice, making access easier through Gate 7 to vehicles which are not part of the heavy traffic.
VI. Identification of the financing sources:
Concluding the above, we estimate that the permanent application of the access procedure will contribute positively to a good road traffic management in the area.
Budget of the National Company “Maritime Ports Administration Constanta”.