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Major roads in Harare closed for rehabilitation

MAJOR roads in Harare have been closed for massive rehabilitation ahead of the 44th Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of State and Government Summit scheduled to be held in Harare in August.

At least 40 greater roads in and around the city have been lined up for the rehabilitation exercise which is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development.

Yesterday, there was congestion on the capital city’s major roads like Julius Nyerere, Samora Machel Avenue, Abdel Gamal Nasser and Leopold Takawira Street as construction companies were hard at work.

The roads infrastructure where the ministry shall apply asphaltic concrete overlay includes Samora Machel (Jaggers to Kuwadzana Roundabout), Dieppe roundabout, Glenara/Samora junction, Glenara/ED Mnangagwa Road, Chiremba (through Braeside), Robert Mugabe/Abdel Gamal Nasser, Josiah Tongogara, Harare Drive roundabout Jaggers, Lomagundi Road (selected sections), Simon Muzenda Street/Robert Mugabe junction to Tongogara Road, and Simon Muzenda Street/Robert Mugabe junction to Tongogara Road.

In a statement, the ministry confirmed the developments and said they anticipate the procurement process for the Greater Harare Roads to be concluded and works to commence before March 31, 2024.

“The Republic of Zimbabwe shall be hosting the 44th SADC Heads of State and Government Summit in August this year,” reads the statement.

“As part of the preparatory works, the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development is tasked with constructing and rehabilitating road infrastructure to facilitate efficient and smooth flow of the delegates and the citizenry during the summit. The ministry has initiated a procurement process for the above Greater Harare roads to engage the contractors that are compliant under Category A to participate in the tender through competitive bidding to ensure that there is value for money.

“The SADC Summit roads construction works include the urban section of the Harare–Chirundu Road project from Julius Nyerere Way to Westgate traffic circle (Second Street and Lomagundi Road), which is being rehabilitated, widened, and dualised and includes street lighting and landscaping. 

“The ministry has directed the contractor apportioned that section on the Harare–Chirundu Road project, Fossil Contracting, to immediately prioritise the works for completion on or before July 31, 2024.”

The ministry said the Harare–Chirundu Road was approved by Cabinet last year in May and the groundbreaking ceremony was done on February 2, 2024.

Furthermore, the ministry has also directed Exodus and Company which is implementing the Harare–Kanyemba Road Project to prioritise the urban section from the Lomagundi intersection with Second Street to the new Parliament Boulevard main access.

This section is to be dualised and rehabilitated and include street lighting and landscaping for completion on or before July 31, 2024.

“Lastly, pursuant to the Cabinet approval obtained in April 2023 for Bitumen World 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, 2024.

“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. The ministry is also embarking on rehabilitating, reconstructing and constructing the country’s roads to promote trafficability and produce a modern way of roads as good road infrastructure is one of the key pillars that support economic development, and an efficient transportation system is crucial for trade, investment, and connectivity,” reads the statement.

The ministry has declared zero tolerance for potholes and said it will proceed with the development infrastructure trajectory that has seen various teams in the provinces embarking on massive pothole patching works.

The development also comes after the construction of about 26km of access roads in the Mount Hampden area has started through Government contracts to link to the New Parliament Building, Bindura Road and other surrounding areas and ease anticipated congestion in the northwest of Harare.

Bitumen World, which is conducting the works, is now on site, constructing about 13km of the Old Mazowe Road from Westgate roundabout and is expected to complete all the roads by July 31 this year.

After constructing the 13km, the Government will later this year reconstruct the other part of the road up to Mazowe, linking it with Bindura Road.

The other road currently under construction is the 7km boulevard that stretches from Bindura Road straight to the New Parliament Building.

It will have eight lanes (four on the right side and four on the left side) and all this will be done by mid-year.

Others are the 4,7km crescent around Parliament and a 2km road that will also lead to the New Parliament Building.

Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Felix Mhona, Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Harare Metropolitan Province Charles Tavengwa and other Government officials recently conducted a groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of the roads in Mt Hampden.

Herald

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