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Massive roads rehabilitation underway

Blessings Chidakwa-Herald Reporter

CONSTRUCTION of the eight-lane 7km boulevard stretching from Bindura Road straight to the New Parliament Building in Mount Hampden is now underway with reputable firm Bitumen World under contract and carrying out the major works with four lanes in each direction.

Road construction falls under the infrastructure clusters and roads are regarded as key economic enablers in the attainment of Vision 2030, that of achieving an upper middle-income society.

Yesterday, it was a hive of activity on the access roads surrounding the New Parliament building from the Westgate roundabout all the way along Old Mazowe Road.

Barely a few days after the ground breaking ceremony, Bitumen World is swiftly moving with eye-catching works on the access roads including clearing of land on the new boulevard road reserve.

Major works were also evident on the reconstruction of the almost 13km Old Mazowe Road from Westgate roundabout with gravelling ongoing so as to widen the road while detour roads were also being opened.

Around the New Parliament area, Bitumen World was recycling the existing road heading in the Mazowe direction.

Work on upgrading a new single bridge along the Old Mazowe Road to a four lane one is also underway with a temporary bridge at one of the access roads.

All the works including the 4,7km crescent around Parliament and a 2km road that will also lead to Parliament are expected to be completed by July 31 this year.

In a statement, the Transport and Infrastructural Development Ministry said it has also directed Exodus and Company (Pvt) Ltd, which is constructing the Harare–Kanyemba Road, to prioritise the urban section from the intersection of Nemakonde Way (ex Lomagundi Road) with Sam Nujoma Street to the main access to the boulevard leading to the New Parliament Building.

This section is to be dualised and rehabilitated and must include street lighting and landscaping for completion on or before July 31.

“Lastly, pursuant to the Cabinet approval obtained in April 2023 for Bitumen World (Pvt) Ltd to construct the North–South Corridor Link and the New Parliament main accesses, the ministry has directed Bitumen World to prioritise the New Parliament main accesses including street lighting and landscaping which also must be completed on or before July 31.

“The ongoing works show the commitment by the ministry to deliver meaningful progress towards infrastructural development and ensuring satisfactory road infrastructure in support of the August SADC Summit,” reads the statement.

The statement also noted road infrastructure where the ministry shall apply asphaltic concrete overlay including the full length of Samora Machel Avenue from the Jaggers roundabout in the east to Kuwadzana roundabout in the west, Glenara Avenue from the roundabout on Vitalis Zvinavashe Road (ex Dieppe Road) to the junction with Samora Machel Avenue and then carrying on to the junction with ED Mnangagwa Road.

At the same time, Vitalis Zvinavashe Road will be recoated from the roundabout to Chiremba Road through Braeside, which along with the Glenara Avenue upgrade will complete the eastern inner-ring road.

Five other major city roads will have the overlay: Robert Mugabe Road, Gamal Abdel Nasser Road, Josiah Tongogara Avenue, selected sections of Harare Drive from the Jaggers roundabout to Nemakonde Way, and the full stretch of Simon Vengayi Muzenda Street from its junction with Robert Mugabe Road to Josiah Tongogara Avenue.

During the ground breaking ceremony for the roads, Bitumen World chief executive officer Mr Andre Zietsman said he was happy and privileged as a company to be involved in the project.

He said it is a milestone as the company was going to be part of history and happy that all the works would be done around the new Parliament.

“The project is about 26km in total and we have five months to complete it, so it will be all hands-on deck and we have to complete this project by July 31 ahead of the SADC summit.

“We are very proud to be associated with this project and we would like to thank our parent ministry and also the President for his vision and from our side we will ensure that we will deliver this project on time,” Mr Zietsman said.

A motorist driving along Old Mazowe Road, Mrs Esther Gwenhure, told The Herald that since the road was constructed decades ago, no major rehabilitation works had been done. 

“This is wonderful. We applaud the Government for a sterling job as our vehicles will have a longer life span,” she said.

Another motorist, Mr George Zendera, was also happy with the rehabilitation of the road, especially its widening.

“Considering the influx of traffic due to the New Parliament, we commend the Government for taking a bold decision to widen the Old Mazowe Road,” he said.

Mr Kelvin Dzova also hailed the Government for opening up the new boulevard from Bindura Road straight to the New Parliament Building. 

“This is the way to go, especially that we are talking of having a new city in the area where access roads should be many. This is commendable on the part of our Government,” he said.

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