Road upgrades across George are set to benefit road users from all communities.
George Municipality Acting Civil Engineering Services Director Lionel Daniels said four major road upgrades were in different phases of implementation in Thembalethu, Lawaaikamp, Rosedale and the city centre. “All these roads are important arterials in high activity zones with many pedestrians, trucks and public transport.
“The municipality is grateful for additional income sources such as provincial and national grants that have enabled us to upgrade overall infrastructure and pedestrian experience, which ultimately benefit business, promote investment and improve quality of life,” said Mr Daniels.
The upgrades in Wellington Street, another in this series of ongoing upgrades, is also finally reaching completion – weather and circumstances-depending, Wellington is expected to reopen Friday (14 May 2021).
Tabata Street, Thembalethu
The first phase of major road infrastructure upgrades in Tabata Street, Thembalethu, started in March.
The project comprises five phases over at least two financial years and will ultimately improve the experience of road users and lives of residents. “Tabata Street is the main arterial through Zone 12, 13 and 15 and takes a lot of vehicle and foot traffic. We are using the opportunity to not only upgrade the road, but also stormwater pipes and sidewalks, which will improve the overall experience of road users and pedestrians and reduce chances of flooding of streets and homes.”
The entire Tabata Street upgrade extends from the intersection with Nelson Mandela Boulevard (Fourways) to where the road currently ends. Roadworks will be carried out in five sections and the five construction phases may overlap.
Construction of phase 1, Nelson Mandela Boulevard to Mfayana Street (about 760m of road), commenced in March 2021 and should be completed by July 2021, weather and circumstances-depending. Phase 2 is expected to commence mid-year (around July/August 2021), details of which will be confirmed closer to the time. Further phases (phases 3 to 5) will be rolled out subject to availability of funds.
Work has commenced in Market Street earlier this month.
As the most used road on the current GO GEORGE network, Market Street is at the heart of the city’s bus service with 3 650 trips per week to and from areas such as Pacaltsdorp, Rosemoor, Parkdene, Conville, Borcherds, Blanco and the Garden Route Mall.
“Market Street connects communities across the city, directly and indirectly, and upgrade of the road and sidewalks will benefit everyone who uses public transport, and do their shopping and business in the CBD. The upgrade is also very important since the road is starting to show signs of decay where the continued traffic of especially heavy busses have been taking its toll,” said Mr Daniels.
The 15-month Market Street project will be concluded in phases and will include the upgrade of underground services such as stormwater and sewerage lines in addition to road surface rehabilitation, as well as construction of wider pedestrian walkways to support high foot traffic in the city’s central business district.
The entire project comprises Market Street from York Street to Hope Street. Roadworks will be done in phases, intersection to intersection, with different phases of construction overlapping. Work has started with the most severely affected section between Meade and Cradock Streets (Phase 1), with the section between Meade and York Streets (Phase 2) to commence the last week in May.
Further phases (phases 3 to 5) will be rolled out from the Cradock Street intersection to Hope Street, subject to availability of funds.
Makriel Street, Lawaaikamp
Reconstruction of Makriel Street in Lawaaikamp, between Main and Fiskaal Streets, is expected to start the last week in May for completion in October. Work includes the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the road surface, kerbs and sidewalks as well as upgrading of stormwater.
Rosedale Access Road
Rehabilitation of the Rosedale Access Road, eastwards from Beach Road (up to the Erf 325 housing projects), is expected to start the week of 24 May 2021 and should be completed at the end of October.
General construction information
Traffic impacts are different for each project depending on the nature of work done, details of which will be published in red-framed advertisements in local print media and the George Municipality social media channels.
GO GEORGE implications at the Market Street roadworks will be communicated by GO GEORGE champions on location as well as via the usual social media and other communication platforms.
Municipal services such as water, sewer and electricity may be temporarily disrupted, and will be communicated via social media when required.
“The municipality realises the impacts during road works are inconvenient, but we ask that road users and pedestrians bear with us and keep the bigger picture in mind.
“Liaison with business and affected parties in the construction zones will be ongoing and we thank residents, tenants and all general road users in advance for their support and cooperation.
“Please take extra care when you are inside or near the construction zone and adhere to all signage and directions by road works personnel. Vehicles should take heed that road surfaces can vary in height at times,” said Mr Daniels.
After a series of initial delays outside the municipality’s control (such as excessive rain and presence of old underground services), Wellington Street had benefited from additional funding that became available in the delay period – which meant an even longer delay in completion date, but turned the initial minor rebuild into a full upgrade with benefits far beyond the project’s initial scope.
“The extra works came with its own frustrations, but we are finally nearing completion and look forward to opening Wellington Road to two-way traffic, probably tomorrow (Friday 14 May). Sidewalks are nearing completion and final asphalt road surfacing took place yesterday (12 May). Road markings and associated smaller civil work will be completed over the next two weeks. The municipality thanks road users for their ongoing patience during these roadworks and ask that they continue to take care during this final phase.”