According to the Uganda National Roads Authority, the project contractor, Shimizu-Konoike JV started work early this month with preparatory works for diversion of both motorised and passenger traffics along Entebbe Road, Frederic Musisi writes.
Preliminary works on the Kampala Flyover Construction and Road Upgrading project (KFCRUP), have commenced.
According to the Uganda National Roads Authority (Unra), the project contractor, Shimizu-Konoike JV started work early this month with preparatory works for diversion of both motorised and passenger traffics along Entebbe Road which will have to be reviewed by traffic police before it is rolled out.
Unra’s media relations officer Allan Ssempebwa said the preparatory works also include relocation of utility lines from the area.
“All these are part of the physical construction works,” Mr Ssempebwa said. “After the ground breaking, normally a contractor is given three months to mobilise equipment which leads us to this time.”
Mr Ssempebwa also revealed that they have since signed on board a supervisory consultant for the project.
The Japanese government through its overseas development agency, JICA, is funding the KFCRUP project to a tune of Shs224b. The project is expected to be completed within 36 months.
According to the project design, the Clock Tower flyover will be half a kilometre long. The road from Shoprite at Queen’s Way towards Katwe side will be widened to have more lanes and the redesign will cover half a kilometre.
The contractors will also improve Nsambya Road, Mukwano Road and part of Ggaba Road.
The construction of the flyover on Entebbe Road serves a purpose of reducing congestion on a route which has the second highest traffic jam in the country after Jinja Road. Traffic jam in the city has increased to the extent that motorists who reside 30Kms away from the city spend more than two hours to reach their workplace, especially in the morning.
World Bank estimates show that traffic congestion costs the country more than Shs2.8 trillion annually.
The flyover project will be executed in phases; phase 2 will be on Jinja Road near the Centenary Park and Wampewo Roundabout. The JICA will also fund it. The tendering of the design for the second phase will be announced next year. Phase two is expected to cost Shs659b.
JICA conceived the flyover project eight years ago after commissioning studies to explore options for alleviating chronic traffic jams around the Greater Kampala Metropolitan Area. The flyovers are also expected to connect outwards to the proposed Kampala-Jinja and Kampala-Mpigi Expressways.
The government and Japanese government signed a loan for the flyover project in 2015.
Unlike in the previous construction project, Unra says it has already acquired 65 per cent of the land on which the flyover will be constructed for the first phase.