Cables delay pipeline
ROADWORKS associated with the construction of Durban’s largest bulk water pipeline have inconvenienced motorists in the Wyebank area for three years.
Aside from traffic jams, they are complaining that the state of Wyebank Road is damaging vehicles and are demanding answers on what has caused the inordinate delay in completing the construction of the Western Aqueduct.
The roadworks extend for about 600m along the road. It consists of rough gravel and is reduced to a single lane.
Mandla Shange said while he understood the need for the pipeline, the delays in construction needed to be addressed.
“I have to drive my daughter to school in Pinetown by 8am every day and driving through this section is an absolute nightmare,” said Shange.
He said the bumpy state of the road also resulted in excessive wear and tear to cars, with motorists now having to service their vehicles more regularly.
Motorist Senzo Nyinde also complained about the excessive congestion. “The removal of an entire lane was the worst idea ever as Wyebank Road is the only road in and out of the area,” he said.
“I don’t think the construction should take this long. It has frustrated many residents.” Esor Construction is the contractor. Site agent Duane Killian said the delays were caused by three electrical cables they discovered underground which were not on the construction plans.
“We had to call the city to remove them. It took almost seven months and we had to stop working at some point. We also had to do rock blasting which caused major damage on the road and further delays,” said Killian. Ward councillor Andreas Mvubu said he had met with the contractor on several occasions regarding the delays.
“The contractor said he experienced difficulties with the city, which needed to be resolved before he could proceed with the project. He said the weather and rock blasting caused major delays,” Mvubu said.
City spokesperson Tozi Mthethwa said there had been a few challenges in implementing the project such as the construction of a large aqueduct in a narrow space, and the recent heavy rains that hampered construction.
“The city is aware of the inconvenience experienced by residents, and we apologise. The contractor is doing everything in his power to lessen the impact on residents.”
She added that on completion, the aqueduct would add 400 megalitres of water a day to the 1.1 million megalitres consumed daily by the city.
An inordinate delay in completing construction of the Wyebank section of the Western Aqueduct bulk water pipeline, near Pinetown, has triggered the ire of motorists tired of sitting in traffic jams and difficulties in getting in and out of the area...