The South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) plans to spend R139-million on periodic maintenance on 23km of the N2 between Mossel Bay and Great Brak next year.
Furthermore, work on a new bridge over the Gwaing River will commence midyear in 2017 at a cost of R88-million.
This forms part of continuous road maintenance and improvement in the Southern Cape, which SANRAL says will benefit small, medium and micro-enterprises (SMMEs).
Randall Cable, SANRAL’s western region engineering manager, emphasised the road agency’s continuing role in infrastructure development and job creation initiatives in the region when he addressed key government, business and community stakeholders in George recently.
“SMMEs benefit from SANRAL projects as they perform a range of tasks such as routine road maintenance contracts. Contractors, in turn, create much-needed job opportunities in the Southern Cape and along the N2,” said Cable.
Next year will see the start of several more improvements and maintenance to the N2, such as on the 44km stretch between Caledon and Riviersonderend (R429m); 57km between Riviersonderend and Swellendam (R97m); 29km between Heidelberg and Riversdale (R670m); as well as improvement on the Knysna Nekkies intersection (R30m) and the Plettenberg Bay intersection (R80m), to name but a few.
Cable also highlighted the two recently completed projects in the region:
The purpose-built walkways, which stretch over a distance of about 8km along the N2 between the York Street interchange and the Garden Route Mall in George, are designed to provide safe access for residents of the nearby residential areas of Thembalethu, Pacaltsdorp, Lawaaikamp and Ballotsview along the N2 corridor. The project included the installation of lighting and CCTV cameras.
To ensure that pedestrians do not cross the highway at will, a two metre-high, welded mesh fence was erected along the N2, separating the pathways from the freeway.
During the duration of the contract 170 permanent job opportunities were created.
Widening and new pedestrian bridge
The Pacaltsdorp interchange bridge and approach roads were widened to create additional turning lanes, sidewalks and a traffic median island. The project included the rehabilitation of existing asphalt surfacing, the relocation of traffic signals, the provision of street lighting and the replacement of road markings and road signs.
A new pedestrian bridge that provides a safe point for pedestrians to cross the N2 freeway was also constructed.
George Municipality contributed 10% of the contract value of R82, 5-million and 106 permanent job opportunities were created during the duration of the contract.