Guidelines for Labour Intensive Construction Methods

Guidelines for Labour Intensive Construction Methods

These best practice guidelines present current state-of-the-art practices in a wide range of labour-based construction methods, manufacturing methods and technologies which have been successfully utilised in South Africa in recent years. They are intended to provide sufficient technical information on methods and technologies to enable those responsible for the design of projects to make confident and informed choices for their projects.

Implementing Employment Intensive Road Works - A cidb Practice Manual

The South African White Paper “Creating an Enabling Environment for Reconstruction, Growth and Development in the Construction Industry (1999)”, expresses a vision for public sector delivery aimed at optimising employment opportunities through labour-intensive construction. This can be realised in the delivery of infrastructure through the adoption, where technically and economically feasible, of 

  • labour-based methods of construction and manufacture where labour, utilizing hand tools and light equipment, is preferred to the use of heavy equipment for specific activities; and 
  • labour-based technologies where there is a shift in balance between labour and equipment, in the way the work is specified and executed for selected works components. 

This cidb practice manual for Implementing Employment Intensive Road Works follows on from the cidb’s guide to best practice for Labour-based Methods and Technologies for Employment- Intensive Construction Works. The latter covers a broad spectrum of construction works. It establishes desirable and appropriate standards, processes, procedures and methods; relating to the design and implementation of labour-based construction technologies, methods for earthworks and for materials manufacture. This first set of guidelines provides sufficient technical information to enable those, responsible for the design of projects, to make confident and informed choices on their use in projects. 

The aim of this series of manuals is twofold, namely to provide a: 

  • contractors construction guide, and a 
  • designers and supervisors guide for contractors, designers and supervisors involved in the construction and upgrading of roads using labour and light plant.

The need for these technical manuals was identified during the training of SME contractors, involved in the Gundo Lashu programme in Limpopo Province – a programme of labour based upgrading of rural roads, promoted by the Department of Public Works, Roads and Transport in collaboration with the International Labour Organization (ILO).