Chota Motala: Nine months to finish

2012-03-22 00:00

FRUSTRATED Pietermaritzburg residents tired of the traffic congestion and long delays caused by the upgrade of the Chota Motala interchange can take heart, particularly those living in the northern suburbs: the end is in sight.

Admittedly it is still nine months away, but at least exasperated commuters can be assured that the daily irritations caused by the construction work will come to an end.

If they were in any doubt about how badly the upgrade was needed, these traffic count figures should persuade them otherwise:

• Average count on N3 north and south: 27 300 vehicles per day;

• Average daily truck traffic on N3 north and south: 5 670, 45% being long vehicles;

• Chota Motala Road peak-hour traffic, mornings into town, afternoons out of town: 2 500 vehicles.

The new interchange will include the first triple-decker flyover the city has seen. The “nuisance factor” caused by the upgrade may have obscured residents’ recognition of the fact that the project represents “extreme engineering” at its best.

This complex set of roads on three different levels, together with the substantially widened roads and new bridges, may not do much to substantiate the city’s status as the City of Choice, but this distinctive feature of urban development will certainly confirm that Maritzburg has shed for good its reputation as Sleepy Hollow.

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