KLOOF residents are urged to take note of road diversions which will affect traffic along Church Road from Abelia Road to the Church Road railway bridge, starting at the end of August. Head of eThekwini Water and Sanitation (EWS), Ednick Msweli, said the Western Aqueduct, eThekwini’s biggest bulk water pipeline project is proceeding in accordance with plans.The pipeline will run along Willingdon Avenue and Church Road for about 1.7km, but to ensure a constant flow of traffic, a temporary access into Old Main Road will be constructed to allow for the pipeline construction along Church Road. Years ago a railway crossing was built behind Kloof Station linking to Old Main Road and Church Road, but it was decommissioned. The railway crossing will be resurrected so vehicles are able to travel along Church Road from Abelia Road, across the railway line and onto Old Main Road, behind Kloof Station. This will mean the section of Church Road affected by the pipeline construction, can be closed without a major impact on traffic flow. Unfortunately, Transnet has only allowed the railway crossing to be kept open temporarily while the pipeline construction is being undertaken.Construction of the railway crossing will begin during the first week of August and is expected to take about three weeks. During construction, traffic will continue to flow along the current routes. Once the temporary railway crossing has been constructed and traffic re-routed, construction of the pipeline on Church Road Bridge and Church Road will start towards the end of August. There will be adequate signage and road markings to warn road users about the construction and alternative route. Traffic control and construction of the section of the Western Aqueduct will take about six months.The advantage of this change to the original plan is that the extensive construction along Old Main Road in the area of the Village Mall and Kloof Station will not take place. This is a major advantage as the traffic congestion here would have been immense, should construction have taken place in Old Main Road.Residents will be issued tags to identify themselves to the “flag person”, allowing them access to their properties at all times.The Umgeni Steam Railway, which passes through Kloof Station on the last Sunday of every month, will continue to run. It is a requirement of the rail authority that the level crossing be properly managed and traffic controlled on days when the train is running. The temporary railway crossing will be blocked off at both access points until the train has passed. Traffic control officers will be present during that time to ensure no traffic crosses over the railway crossing.The two phases of the Western Aqueduct are intended to both replace and augment existing infrastructure that brings water into Durban from Midmar and Spring Grove Dams. The Western Aqueduct is expected to considerably strengthen the capacity of bulk water supply and meet eThekwini’s needs for the next 30 years. Msweli said EWS was extremely proud of the progress made on the second phase of the Western Aqueduct, adding that eThekwini Municipality had recognised the need to put in place critical infrastructure that would have a major impact on the future of one of South Africa’s most rapidly growing cities.“We want to thank residents for their patience and understanding during the pipeline construction and apologise for any disruptions to traffic,” he said.The Western Aqueduct project has been designed and is being monitored by the Knight Piesold-Naidu Consulting-Royal Haskoning DHV Joint Venture. - Supplied.