Johannesburg Roads Agency seeks millions to fix floods damaged roads

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The Johannesburg Roads Agency will repair several roads, bridges, and dams that were damaged by heavy flooding over the past week.

The Roads Agency estimates that it will cost between R120 million and R150 million to repair the roads, but this figure may rise as engineers assess the damage.

Roodepoort, Lenasia, and parts of Soweto are among the areas affected.

Scores of people have been displaced following the heavy rainfall.

VIDEO: Flooding due to heavy rainfall in Nancefield Soweto, 9 Dec 2022:


Damaged roads and dams, burst river banks, aging infrastructure, poor maintenance inadequate storm water drains, and climate change -these are some of the underlying factors that exacerbated the situation, leaving arterial routes and bridges badly damaged after the storms.

“Our rough estimate sits at R120 million and at this point in time we have a panel of engineers that will look at the exact extent of the damage. The reason why we do not have an exact figure is that as of yesterday, we had more bridges collapsing and the roads are unstable and we don’t know the extent of the damage,” explains Louis Nel, JRA Acting CEO.

VIDEO: JRA seeks millions to fix flood-damaged roads:

City of JHB finances

But the costs of repairs will put more pressure on the City’s already struggling finances.

“The City is not in a good state in terms of our finances and this is not going to be resolved overnight and is compounded by an instability in the council where some of us are operating where we find like even issues such as the bonds we collect don’t get approved because of this instability- it’s a challenge,” says City of Joburg’s Infrastructure MMC, Funzela Ngobeni.

In an effort to speedily assist impacted communities that were cut off from electricity supply during the storms, Eskom has given City Power some reprieve.

Eskom Gauteng spokesperson Amanda Qithi says, “We received a request from City Power to exempt them from load shedding over the next three days because of the storms that have affected their infrastructure, so they requested time to go in and restore those areas.”

The Mayor of Johannesburg Mpho Phalatse elaborates more on the backlog of calls. “There are approximately five thousand calls logged to post the flooding which needs to be attended to, fixed and cleared over the next few hours of reprieve.”

With a warning of more rains over the weekend, the roads agency is concerned that the situation could get worse.