A recent assessment of the Johannesburg roads network revealed that the number of roads with very good and good surfaces decreased by seven per cent, while the number of roads with poor and very poor surfaces increased by five per cent.
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According to this assessment by the Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA), which identifies and categorises roads for maintenance, upgrades, reconstruction and resurfacing across the 13 599 kilometre road network, the current state of Johannesburg roads is as follow:
• 32 per cent (making up 3 968 kilometres) of the surfaced roads require reconstruction
• 45 per cent (making up 5 581 kilometres) of surfaced roads are in a very good and good condition and may only require ad hoc maintenance
• 23 per cent (making up 2 852 kilometres) of surfaced roads require resurfacing
• 72 per cent of the 1 168 kilometres of gravel roads require reshaping and re-gravelling
“In terms of engineering standards, the roads condition index across the city indicates a 25 per cent increase in the deterioration of the road network and it is still deteriorating, resulting in allocated funding being inadequate to address the rate of deterioration.
Annual budgets therefore require a greater fiscal investment to reverse the deterioration of roads and ensure a safe road network,” said Goodwill Mbatha, the JRA Acting Managing Director.
He added that the total road network has increased by 131 kilometres since 2013, resulting in the present total capital budget of R1 213 million allocated towards roads being insufficient. “Due to environmental factors such as climatic conditions, increased traffic volume and percentage of heavy duty vehicles, Johannesburg’s road network is at present faced with a R7,1 billion backlog,” Mbatha said.
The JRA’s Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Programme together with the ongoing Roads Resurfacing Programme, form part of the 10-year Roads Development Plan which aims to, by 2023, improve all poor and very poor road conditions to good and very good conditions. “JRA’s annual target across the total road network for surfacing is 10 per cent and five per cent for reconstruction, however, due to budgetary constraints only one per cent is annually resurfaced and 0,02 per cent reconstructed,” he said.
Roads being earmarked for resurfacing include, Elias Motsoaledi Road, Main Reef Road and Ontdekkers Road.
But, something that has been yielding good results, is the Executive Mayor of the City of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba’s War on Potholes campaign. Since its launch in March, the following has been achieved:
• JRA received 34 817 requests for pothole repairs, of which 34 551 were carried out. The remaining 266 unresolved requests were carried over to the current financial year and were addressed in July 2017.
• JRA maintenance teams across the seven regions have shown great improvement in addressing pothole-repair backlogs with a total of 29 496 pothole repairs carried out within 30 days at a resolution rate of 84,72 per cent.
• The 2016/ 2017 financial year saw R22 125 781,37 being invested in public safety to ensure pothole repairs and since July 2017 up until 17 October 2017, JRA spent R199 632,23 on repairing potholes across the city.
• A total of 5 603 pothole-repair requests were received and 4 750 had been repaired, with the outstanding 853 scheduled for repairs.
Follow JRA for the latest developments, journey planning tips, alternative routes, and traffic advisory by either visiting their website (www.jra.org.za), Twitter account (@MyJra) or Facebook page (Johannesburg Roads Agency).
You can also subscribe to their email hotline ([email protected]), or use the JRA Find&Fix mobile app.
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