Work will resume on the N2 following months of delays over the hiring of a new contractor. The project is expected to take 10 months to complete. DOCTOR NGCOBO African News Agency (Ana)
Durban - Work is expected to resume on the N2 between the Umhlali and Umvoti river crossings. It will come as a relief to motorists who have had to deal with construction on the busy highway that often saw three lanes reduced to just one in peak traffic.

According to the South African National Roads Agency (Sanral), a contract has been awarded to a new company and the project is expected to continue for 10 months.

A Sanral spokesperson said the tender had been awarded to Raubex for completion of the unfinished roadworks, while the contract administration would be undertaken by Naidu Consulting Engineers.

“Work will commence in the first quarter of 2020 once the contractor finalises initial appointments of SMME contractors from the project area.

“Construction will be carried out in clearly defined construction zones,” Sanral said.

Sanral said in order to complete the outstanding works in the shortest possible time, traffic would be accommodated by contra-flow on each carriageway, which would allow the contractor full access to the construction work areas.

“Work will be initially undertaken to complete the outstanding work on the northbound carriageway, thereafter proceeding to the southbound carriageway,” Sanral said.

Ridhwaan Mahomed, Sanral eastern region project manager, said work originally began in February 2016 for localised realignment of the N2 at Umhlali River Bridge and at Umvoti River Bridge, but construction stopped when the main contractor was put into liquidation.

“This resulted in motorists having to contend with sections of the N2 being narrowed to a single lane for almost four years. It was never Sanral’s intention for this work to be delayed for such a prolonged period,” he said.

Mahomed said that after the contract was terminated with the original contractor, Sanral tried for months to resolve the way forward with the National Treasury in appointing a new contractor, as well as ensuring continuity regarding technical supervision.

Meanwhile, construction work is continuing on the M4 following the road’s partial collapse during the heavy rains late last year. The project is expected to be wrapped up by June.

The Mercury