The Government has secured a $400m (about sh1 trillion) credit from the World Bank to reconstruct roads in the north and eastern Uganda.Under the auspices of the north-eastern corridor road asset management program, the Tororo- Soroti- Lira and Kamdini roads will be rehabilitated to improve mobilit
By Joel Ogwang
The Government has secured a $400m (about sh1 trillion) credit from the World Bank to reconstruct roads in the north and eastern Uganda.
Under the auspices of the north-eastern corridor road asset management program, the Tororo- Soroti- Lira and Kamdini roads will be rehabilitated to improve mobility and trade between the two regions.
COWI Consulting Engineers and Planners have been procured to conduct a study and design the program, said Kimeze Ssebbugga, the Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) acting executive director.
“We expect the program to kick-off over the next 18 months,” he said. “We will engage contractors to reconstruct the corridor and thereafter, they will be retained for seven years to maintain it.”
The onus of maintenance, under the new program, falls squarely on the contractor. “If the contractor doesn’t do a good job and potholes emerge after only two years, the cost of maintenance will be met by the contractor,” said Kimeze.
The reconstruction of the corridor will kick-off after the current rehabilitation of the Tororo-Mbale- Soroti road done by Dott Services, concludes in March 2014.
Under the program, the corridor will be divided into Tororo- Mbale- Soroti, Lira-Kamdini, and Kamdini- Gulu and Kafu Karuma, said Dan Alinange, the UNRA publicist.
The program, the first of its kind adopted from New Zealand and Austria is considered a new model intended to cure the roads maintenance problem after development of a road.
“In other contracts, the defects liability period is usually one year. With this program, the contractor will maintain the road for between 7- to years,” said Alinange.
“The initial cost is high, but we feel this is the way to go to keep our corridors in good condition in the future.”
Speaking after signing a sh13b contract for the construction of the Birara Bridge at UNRA head offices on Thursday, , Kimeze noted that the government was implementing the national roads development and maintenance program intended to improve Uganda’s competitiveness in tourism and trade.
Funded by the government, the construction of the bridge over River Birara linking Rukungiri to Kanungu, contracted to China Harzone Industry Corp, will be executed under a design and build scheme.
The contractor will design the bridge in the next three months before actual construction kicks off in February 2014. Construction of the bridge is expected to last 18 months.
It will be a seven meters bridge with pedestrian walkways on either sides, built with both steel and reinforced concrete.
“The contractor will not only build the bridge, but also construction of 10kms of access roads. If we build a bridge alone and don’t work on access roads, the bridge will be rendered useless,” said Kimeze.
Liu ChangQi, the China Harzone Industry Corp deputy general manager, pledged to deliver the bridge within the specified contractual period.
“We affirm our commitment to deliver a high-star quality bridge that will give the best value for money,” he said.
Gov’t secures $400m World Bank credit for roads