The upgrades of the N2 and N3 in KwaZulu-Natal form part of National Government’s key Strategic Integrated Projects, SIP2: Durban-Free State-Gauteng Logistics and Industrial Corridor. SIP2 aims to strengthen the logistics and transport corridor between South Africa’s main industrial hubs, improve access to Durban’s export and import facilities and raise efficiency.
The upgrade of the National Route 2 (N2) will focus on a 55km length, from Lovu River on the South Coast to Umdloti on the North Coast. The N3 upgrade will focus on a 79.3km section from Durban to Pietermaritzburg, which incorporates upgrading from EB Cloete (‘spaghetti junction’) in eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality to Mpofana Local Municipality under the uMgungundlovu District Municipality, as well as the N2 from eThekwini to Umdloti.
These upgrades include widening the N2 and N3 carriageways, with four or five lanes in each direction, and reconfiguration of most major interchanges along these route sections.
The greater N2/N3 corridor upgrades are expected to take 8-10 years to complete and will create up to 15,000 job opportunities during this period.
Eleven projects worth approximately R24 billion are currently under construction.
The massive N2/N3 project is divided into many phases, which includes upgrading of the EB Cloete Interchange, one of the most iconic interchanges in the country. Popularly known as ‘spaghetti junction’, it was completed in 1970 and provides a full-system interchange for the N2 and N3 national roads. The network has been under increasing capacity constraints and SANRAL decided to undertake much needed upgrades.
At R5 billion, the EB Cloete Interchange upgrade is the biggest single project value undertaken by SANRAL to date.
Limited space for expansion of the EB Cloete Interchange will see this project feature a spectacular arch that will support the N3 carriageway as well as the fly-over directional ramps. The arch will resonate with the arch theme of the Moses Mabhida Stadium and will be an iconic landmark as one enters Durban on the N3.
EB Cloete Interchange N2 North and N3 West will have a spectacular arch that will support the N3 carriageway as well as the fly-over directional ramps.
General workers will be sourced from wards within 5km of the project site, which extends about 8.5km up and down the N2 and the N3 on either side of the interchange. It is expected that about R350 million will be spent on local labour over the contract period.
Completion of the upgrade of this interchange is expected to take place in 2027.