The N2 Wild Coast road project is full steam ahead. The KwaJama communities in the Eastern Cape’s Mbizana municipality, that will be affected by this road, are hopeful that the construction of the road and bridges will bring a better life and development to their area.
The road will be a high mobility route that will link the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal provinces. It will consist of two mega bridges. The first bridge – the Mtentu Bridge – is in its early stages of construction.
Both bridge construction costs are estimated to be in the range of R1.5-billion to R1.8-billion each.
The benefits for road users are that the road will significantly lower transportation time and improve accessibility to a large part of the Eastern Cape.
The road is seen as a catalyst for sustainable local economic and social development in the province.
The community at KwaJama at the Madiba rural area where there is early construction for the Mtentu Bridge is a poor community which hopes for development through this road.
The lack of development is dire in this area. The homesteads have no water or electricity and they hope with the coming development not only jobs will be created but so will it attract service delivery.
Phuphu Ndavela, who is 80-year-old has lived in the area for her whole life, says she hopes the road will bring her basic services.
Previously communities complained of a lack of consultation from Sanral. This time round it seems they are working very closely with the community through consultation, ensuring that their concerns are being heard. Due to the many broken promises made by government to the community some remain sceptical of the promise of jobs.
The last time a mega bridge was built in South Africa was in the early 1980s, that being the N2 Tsitsikamma toll road along the Garden route.
The Mtentu Bridge will be the first of its magnitude in South Africa.
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