Traffic travelling towards Kingston along the Mandela Highway was switched to a new 3.4 kilometer section of the roadway between the Highway 2000 East/West Off Ramp and Tom Cringle Drive yesterday, Sunday, March 25.
Manager, Communication and Customer Services at the National Works Agency (NWA), Stephen Shaw, says the new section of roadway onto which eastbound traffic has been redirected, is accommodating two lanes of traffic.
Mr. Shaw explains that the switching of traffic is to facilitate the completion of work on the eastbound carriageway in the vicinity of the Ferry Police Station which is to be widened and an off ramp built. These works are to be completed by Sunday, April 1.
He says that this will then allow for the placement of both east and westbound traffic on the new road during the first week of April following which soil stabilization work and the placement of additional base material for the construction of the westbound lanes will be undertaken.
The old eastbound carriageway which borders the Ferry police station and the Hydel Group of Schools is now being operated as a two-way service road taking motorists to and from properties which border the roadway to also include IGL Limited and Tile City.
To get on to the service road motorists heading towards Kingston should keep left while driving along the new section of the roadway then make a U-turn at Tom Cringle Drive/Nestle Building while motorists travelling from Kingston will make the right turn at the same location to access the service road.
The police have been engaged at the highest level to ensure that the changes have minimal impact on the travelling public. Additional flag-persons are placed along the corridor and new signs erected as part of the overall safety plan.
Public passenger operators and commuters are being advised to exercise extreme caution when using the improved Mandela Highway, especially over the next few months. Bus operators are being asked to pick up and set down passengers in the extreme left lane of the roadway.
The Mandela Highway Road Improvement Project is being undertaken at a cost of $65-million US dollars.