By Fasika Tadesse
The Ethiopian Roads Authority (ERA) has awarded a 1.2 billion Br road project to two local companies, ASER construction Plc and Yemane Girmay General Constructors Plc, on Thursday February 5, 2015.
The road projects, totaling 127.5Kms in Oromia Region and Southern Nations Nationalities People Region (SNNPR), are financed by the government of Ethiopia from its 20 billion Br budget for the current fiscal year out of the total 30 billion Br budget of the Authority. The remaining 10 billion Br is obtained from grants and road fund.
ASER will construct 52.2Km asphalt concrete for Koka-Adulala-Bishoftu road, which will connect Bishoftu (Debre Zeit) with Addis-Adama toll road, Modjo to Hawassa Expressway, and with three towns including Koka, Dire and Adullala, located near Bishoftu. ASER won the project with 613.2 million Br to finalize it within two years. The Authority is in the process of selecting a consultant for the project, according to a statement from the ERA.
Modjo is an initial point for the road located at 94Km from Addis Abeba and stretches to Bishoftu with the aim of providing economic benefit for the towns that the road passes through. The road will have major advantages to transport five items from the area to Addis Abeba and other towns, including horticulture, agricultural products, cereal products, pumice and limestone and industrial products.
The road will have a10m width in the town section and seven metres in rural section and it will include bridges and drainage pipes.
Established in 2009, ASER worked on projects being outsourced by CRBC Addis Engineering Plc. The projects include Bole International Airport Expansion Project, phase one and two, Eastern Industry Zone concrete pavement works, Bole Ring Road utility line construction and Ayat Roundabout-Ayat Condominium Road Project.
The second road project was awarded to Yemane Girmay for the construction of a 75.3Km gravel road from Aycid to Konge. The road is located in the southern part of the Benishangul Gumuz in Metekel Zone. Yemane Girmay will be paid 602.6 million Br and Net Consulting, a local firm, will consult for the road project, which will include drainage pipes, road protection works, and traffic lights.
The road project starts in a town called Aycid, which is located 33Km away from the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). It will open a way to the dam to transport different commodities and is expected to be finished in three years, having a seven-metre carriageway in both rural and town sections.
Yemane Girmay worked on a 30m wide and 4.1Km long road from Ayat Square to Ayat Goro junction and a 50m wide and 1.9Km long road from CMC Square to Karalo junction.
Both contractors have not worked on federal road projects, before according to Samson Wondemu, communication director at the Authority.
Both projects are part of the Fourth Road Sector Development Program (RSDP IV), for which implementation costs are estimated to reach 125.3 billion Br. Out of this, 84.5 billion Br is allocated for federal projects, 14.4 billion Br for regional and 26.4 billion Br for Weredas.
The RSDP IV, part of the Growth Transformation Plan (GTP), aims to rehabilitate 728Km of trunk roads, upgrade 5,023Km of trunk and link roads, construct 4,331Km of new link roads, heavily maintain 4,700Km of paved and gravel roads and conduct routine maintenance of 85,649Km of road networks, by 2014/15 fiscal year. The ERA has rehabilitated, upgraded, constructed and maintained 41,664Km of roads as of June 2013, at a cost of 81.8 billion Br, of which 60.6 billion Br was on federal roads, roads that are outside of Addis Abeba.
The agreements were signed between Sisay Bekele, acting director general of ERA, replacing Zaid Woldegabriel, and Yemane Abreha, general manager of ASER and Wondesson Girmay deputy general manager of Yemane Girmay.
“As the area experiences accumulation of sand near Awash River, ASER should consider it in design and build it to avoid the problem,” stresses Sisay.
The ERA expects the total road network in the country to reach 136,044Km by the end of the current fiscal year, from the 48,793Km coverage it had in 2010. In addition, Ethiopia’s road density has increased from 24Km in 1997 to 78Km in 2013, with total roads growing from 26,550Km in 2009/10 to 100,000Km as of July 2014.
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