Solomon Mahlangu Drive upgrades get delayed again
In a June 26 letter, Umso Construction said: “On June 22 the company was placed on business rescue by way of a special board resolution”
The project, from the K54 at Mahube Valley in Mamelodi to the R104, is costing the provincial government R285 million and was scheduled to be completed in August 2021.
As part of the upgrade, the existing gravel section will be reconstructed, asphalt surfacing and drainage improvements made, road markings redone, damaged signs repaired, and the guardrails repaired. In addition, a dual carriage-way will be built, which will help to increase capacity as well as improve road safety.
The road stretches almost 12km from Lynnwood to Mamelodi, linking Lynnwood Road to the K54 in Mamelodi.
The first phase of the project will cover about 9km from the R104 (Bronkhorstspruit Road) to the K54 in Mamelodi.
This is not the first time the road construction has experienced problems.
Last year, a group of 100 hawkers said they would undo the work done to extend the road.
They threatened to burn tyres and the construction sites if the government didn’t move them to an alternative area of business.
The upgrade also led to the closure of a makeshift taxi rank and, according to traders, business was booming there. There are more than 70 businesses along Solomon Mahlangu Drive, between the bridge next to Extension 6 and the University of Pretoria, in Mamelodi. Their issue was since resolved by relevant stakeholders.
In August last year during a sod-turning event, MEC for Public Transport and Roads Infrastructure Jacob Mamabolo appealed to residents to refrain from burning and barricading roads when voicing their grievances to the government.
“We plead with communities to refrain from destroying the roads and appreciate the effect this has on people’s lives. We discourage the burning of clinics and schools or the hampering of services,” said Mamabolo.