Johannesburg will be spending almost R2 billion on the re-building and fixing of road infrastructure in the City to alleviate current traffic congestion, lower the cost of doing business and attract investment.
The M1 and M2 highways and the major arteries serving commercial hubs such as Sandton and Rosebank will be the major beneficiaries of this extensive transport upgrade which will take place over a three year period. The Soweto Highway will also receive a R180 million facelift.
Executive Mayor Clr Mpho Parks Tau said the roads project forms part of a comprehensive investment in strategic infrastructure of more than R110 billion over the next decade.
A quality road network is at the core of Johannesburg’s transformation and future economic and residential growth will be concentrated along the major transport arteries or ‘Corridors of Freedom’.
Mayor Tau said the City had recently met with business communities in the northern suburbs and listened to their concerns about the quality of roads and traffic congestion.
“We are confident that this investment will address most of the major issues raised by business and contribute to the rejuvenation of the City’s premier financial and commercial districts,” he said.
The bulk of the funding will go towards the comprehensive rehabilitation and resurfacing of roads. “We are aware of the public’s frustration about potholes and will be spending almost R80-million on patching and fixing cracks”.
However, our primary focus is the long term rehabilitation of the road network,” said Mayor Tau. “We are not chasing after potholes or looking for quick fixes”.
The resurfacing project will be undertaken by the Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) which is responsible for the provision of quality road infrastructure, effective traffic management, the maintenance of traffic signals and road signs and the upkeep of the storm water system.
The first phase of the resurfacing programme will result in the upgrading of more than 435km of road across all seven regions of the City during the current financial year. Mayor Tau said the reconstruction will support economic growth and development by reducing traffic congestion, cutting down on travel time and facilitating the movement of people, goods and services.
Construction projects will, unfortunately, result in short-term inconvenience to motorists, residents and the business community. The City will, however, attempt to keep disruptions to a minimum, step up traffic management and provide for alternative routes while the work is taking place.
“I call on Joburgers and visitors to our city to be patient, remain courteous and obey traffic signals during this short period of disruption,” said Mayor Tau.
“The long-term benefits of a world-class highway and suburban road network will far outweigh the temporary inconvenience during the construction phase,” he said.