SANRAL plans to construct Fish River Pass bypass

NOVEMBER 10, 2014

The South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) has issued a call for tenders for the upgrading of the N2 between Grahamstown and the Fish River, saying the work “includes the construction of a bypass around the Fish River Pass”.

The consulting engineers for the project say that construction of the 47-kilometre stretch will be split into three phases of approximately equal length.

The estimated cost of construction, ac-cording to the consultants is R900 million.

The Department of Environmental Affairs has granted SANRAL environmental authorisation for the project that the National Roads Agency states will take approximately 27 months.

The Basic Assessment Report on the project says the upgrading of the stretch of the N2 “will improve the level of service of the road to cater for increased traffic volumes over the next 25 years”.

The Report says the project will include a number of geometric improvements that “will increase the design speed to 100 kilometres an hour”. It notes that the benefits of this will include lower road-user costs, travel time savings, and improved sight distance resulting in a drop in the number of traffic accidents.

SANRAL plans to widen the road either to the left or the right of the existing road “in order to accommodate two-way traffic during construction” and limited the number of Stop-Go restrictions so reducing vehicle build up along areas under construction.

The report points out that the road was built in the 1950’s and “does not meet the current road-user needs,” while adjacent land owners have pointed to the number of fatal accidents due to poor visibility and sight distance.

It also says the project has been identified as “a contributing factor” towards the success of SIP6 as “it will enhance service delivery capacity and thereby impact positively on the population”.

It adds that the upgrading of the road will also contribute to SIP3, the South-Eastern node and corridor development. - metrominutes