The City of Johannesburg continues to walk its talk on infrastructure improvements with the recent announcement by Herman Mashaba, Executive Mayor of the city, of the start of the much needed manhole cover replacement project.
In announcing this project, the major said that as a result of a decades long neglect of infrastructure maintenance, 99 deaths were reported in 2014/15 and 104 deaths were reported in 2016/17 due to manholes left uncovered throughout the city.
“Under the previous administration, there was a substantial amount of money kept aside to fund international travel instead of being channelled towards service delivery projects for our people. Over R1-million has been re-prioritised from this money to make the project possible and in the process, prevent the unnecessary loss of life.
This is an example of how the city’s limited resources can be used to effectively drive service delivery, which has positive and tangible results for residents,” said Mashaba.
The project forms part of the city’s future network upgrades plan which aims to improve road infrastructure which, he says, is an essential component for boosting our city’s economy and creating job opportunities.
“By ensuring that businesses can transport their goods and reach consumers and that our residents are able to safely move across the city, we will be a step closer to reaching our goal of achieving 5% economic growth within the city by 2021.
The project is expected to be completed by 15 December 2017 for all 4 000 of the city’s uncovered manholes,” said Mashaba.
Construction work will be carried out during off-peak times during the day to fast-track planned upgrades with minimal impact on road users and pedestrians. The project will also include traffic accommodation, relocation of services, storm-water, roadworks, road signs and markings.
Expanding on the overall infrastructure improvements, the major said: “Our administration has developed a comprehensive approach to the maintenance, development and expansion of the city’s road network. The Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) has been allocated an operating budget of R1.1-billion in the 2017/18 financial year, and a three year capital budget of R4-billion.
“We have also allocated R105-million for the installation and repair of broken down traffic signals throughout the city. This includes the implementation of our ‘No Joint’ policy. In addition, R79-million is also made available within this budget to continue the City’s war against potholes on our roads.”