May Pen To Williamsfield Leg Of Highway 2000 Is 64 Per Cent Complete

May Pen To Williamsfield Leg Of Highway 2000 Is 64 Per Cent Complete

Work on Phase 1C of Highway 2000, which is being executed under the Southern Coastal Highway Improvement Project (SCHIP) from May Pen to Williamsfield, is 64 per cent complete.

Managing Director of the National Road Operating and Constructing Company (NROCC), Stephen Edwards, told JIS News that elements of the project are at various stages of development.

These include earthworks – approximately 87 per cent, bridge construction – approximately 86.25 per cent, box and pipe culvert construction – approximately 85 percent, jersey barrier construction – approximately 27 per cent, and asphalt paving – approximately 19 per cent completed.

Mr. Edwards pointed out that there have been “very minimal disruptions” to the flow of traffic on the existing road.

“Most of the work to be undertaken is within a greenfield alignment, with vehicular traffic impact limited to construction of underpasses at the numerous local road intersections. All crossings, including roads, rivers, streams, drains, and other waterways are accessed by underpasses,” he noted.

The Managing Director said that the construction will include a new interchange at Clarendon Park, with a link road from the highway to the main road (A2) at a traffic signal-controlled intersection.

Two toll plazas and one administration building will also be built. The layout of the building will be similar to the one at Caymanas on the North-South leg.

One of the toll plazas will be comparable to the facility at Spanish Town, on the link road, while the other will be similar to the existing toll facility at May Pen, on the mainline.

The work will also include the provision of streetlights for ramps, interchanges and the toll plaza area; safety fences and concrete median barriers; fibre-optic facilities and an emergency telephone system or closed-circuit television (CCTV) system.

Mr. Edwards explained that the new segment of the highway will begin at the western end of the existing roundabout at May Pen, continue in a westerly direction and cross the Rio Minho, parallel to where the existing A2 main road crosses the river.

The route continues in a westerly direction, passing south of the A2 (Bustamante Highway), the Four Paths community, Osbourne Store, Toll Gate and Clarendon Park.

It then heads into St. Toolies, and continues through hilly terrain with speed limit reduced from 110 km/hr to 80 km/hr.

The Managing Director points out that a vertical gradient of six per cent is required between St. Toolies and Williamsfield to achieve a change in ground level of almost 100 metres.

The existing Melrose Hill Bypass will be incorporated into the new alignment, upgrading to a four-lane dual carriageway with a speed limit of 80 km/hr, crossing the railway line, and terminating just east of the corrugated steel bridge in the vicinity of the Williamsfield roundabout.

The highway is being built at a cost of US$188.5 million and is scheduled for completion in March 2023.

It engages 48 engineers, of which 18 are Jamaicans. In total, 754 workers are employed on the project, 603 of whom are Jamaicans.

WRITTEN BY: PETA- GAY HODGES
SOURCE: JIS news

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