The Ethiopian Roads Authority (ERA) awarded 6.5 billion Birr road construction projects to three Chinese companies in an agreement signed on Thursday, January 16, 2014.
Two of the projects, totaling 161.23kms, are found in Amhara, while the third, 28.1kms, is in Addis Abeba.
There will be three projects in Addis Abeba: the continuation of the Rapid Adama Expressway and two projects to connect this expressway with Addis Abeba. All three projects will be undertaken by the China Communications Construction Company (CCCC), which has already been working on the expressway.
One of these – the 14.5kmAkaki-ITPark(Gorro) road – will link the city to the expressway on the east and north-east. The 13.6kms Akaki-Lebu project will do the same on the west and north-west.
These roads, 7.2m wide, will enable six lanes on either side, with walkways in both directions. These roads include four overpasses and crossing bridges, as well as train crosses. Eventually, they will be upgraded to accommodate 12 lanes, according to the statement from the ERA.
The ERA awarded these projects to CCCC for 4.6 billionBr.
CCCC has been inEthiopiafor 15 years. Its major recent road projects include the Addis Abeba-Adama expressway andAfrica Avenue(Bole Road) projects. The contract for the construction of the Addis-Adama expressway was signed in June 2009, with a four-year deadline. Construction started in April 2010.
The longer, totaling 161.23kms, but much less expensive roads, are in Amhara. One is 89.23kms, starting from Gashena, 620 km north of Addis Abeba in the North Gonder Zone; it crosses through Lalibela to Sekota.
The road is 89.23kms-long, with a seven-metre carriageway width and 1.5m gravel shoulder on each side in rural sections. It will have several bridges that are 19m long, the ERA’s statement said. Just over half of the construction will take place in mountainous areas, it said, while about five percent will be in valleys.
The project has been awarded to the China Railway No. 3 Engineering Group Co Lltd.for 1.4 billion Br.The consultant for this project is a firm called Metaferia.
The construction company has agreed to complete in 3.5 years and within budget. It is expected to connect the rural area with the towns and facilitate greater tourism flow.
The third project is a 44km road in Zagora (Kechen Meda), which involves five large bridges, each 30m long. This contract has been awarded to China Railway Seventh Group Co Ltd for 485 million Br; a consulting firm is under selection. The project is expected to be completed in two years.
The Ethiopian government allocated 3.05 billion Br for the cost of design and construction of the three roads; the remaining 3.45 billion Br was obtained as a loan from the Exim Bank ofChina.
The projects are part of the ERA’sfourth RoadSector Development Programme (RSDP), which aims to boost road coverage across the country.
The three contracts were signed by Zaid Woldegabriel, the ERA’s general director;Zhou Yongsheng, CCCC’s representative; Zhao Sanbao, general manger of China Railway No3 Engineering Group Co. Ltd and Wang Guanghui, manager of the Marketing Development of Chain Railway Seventh Group Co Ltd, at the premises of the ERA’s headquarters, located nearMexico SquareonRas Abebe Aregay Street.
“The three companies have been inEthiopiafor 15 years and are well-experienced in road construction,” Zaid said.
The representatives of the Chinese companies promised to deliver the projects on time, while at the same time maintaining full quality.
The ERA has worked on the rehabilitation of 728 km of trunk roads and upgraded 5,023 trunk and link roads. It has also carried out the construction of 4,331 km of new link roads and maintained 4,700kms of asphalt and gravel roads.
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