Vusumuzi Dube, Senior Municipal Reporter
A total of 43 roads in Bulawayo have been identified to be rehabilitated under the Government’s Emergency Roads Rehabilitation Programme (ERRP) at a cost of $872 million.
Early this month, President Mnangagwa revealed that the Government has set aside $33,6 billion for the Second Phase of the ERRP across the country. This was after Government in February declared the country’s road network a state of disaster as most of the roads have become untrafficable following damage by heavy rains that were received across the country and poor maintenance by local authorities.
Phase 2 of the ambitious project is envisaged to create in excess of 20 000 jobs for local communities, including women and youths.
According to the latest Bulawayo City Council report, the local authority has, while awaiting the release of the funds by treasury, identified the roads that are set to be rehabilitated under the Government-funded facility.
Some of the major roads due to be rehabilitated under the facility include Fife Street (Masotsha Ndlovu Avenue to 23rd Avenue, 4,1 kilometres), Luveve Road- arterial (Lobengula Street to Nguboyenja Avenue, 2,1 kilometres), Luveve Road -arterial (Nguboyenja to Siyephambili drive, 4,7 kilometres), Waverly Road (Sixth avenue Avenue Extension to Khami Road, 1,7 kilometres), Matopos Road (23rd Avenue to Leander Avenue, 2,5 kilometres) and Matopos Road (Leander Avenue to City boundary, 2,9 kilometres.
The roads also include; Nketa Drive-major collector (Hyde Road to Emadibheni Road 2,1 kilometres), Nketa Drive-major collector (Hyde Park Road to Khami Road 1,1 kilometres), Coghlan Avenue (George Avenue and Cecil Avenue, 2,8 kilometres), George Avenue (Gwanda Road to Harare Road, 2,4 kilometres), Dundee Drive (Plumtree Road to Matopos, 2,9 kilometres), Cowdray Corridor (Railway line to Cowdray Park service station, 2,9 kilometres, Doncaster Road (Bristol Rd South to 23rd Avenue. 1,09 kilometres) and Josiah Chinamano 14th Avenue to Halifax road, 2,9 kilometres.
Council has indicated that about 75 percent of the city’s road network has outlived its lifespan and US$700 million was needed for the project.
Council officials indicated that they had just received $15 436 055 from Government through Zinara, for the first quarter which was being used for routine maintenance of the road network. The 2021 Zinara allocation for Bulawayo is $157 million.