Liberia: Ria Road Expansion On Course – Says East International; All Equipment in Country

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MONROVIA — Since winning the contract for the expansion of the Robertsfield highway, there have been multiple concerns about East International’s ability to implement the multimillion dollars contract, especially in the absence of equipment.

EAST International is implementing the construction of a 45km 4-lane ELWA–RIA Road costing up to US$101m. Despite the many concerns, Sakona Kelvin Buima the Company General Manager is confident that his company can do a good job and deliver before the deadline.

According to him, all equipment needed for the first phase of the project have been procured and the work has started.

Kevin is hopeful that of handing over a complete project by 2023 to the Liberian Government and its people. “We now have money to begin the work. As we speak, all of the contractors are being paid, engineers are also being paid and we are hopeful that by 2023 the project will be completed,” Kevin said.

 Mr. Tony Tang is the project supervisor; he tells FrontPageAfrica that the contractors are currently working on the super base of the road which is the first phase of layer works. (Unbound” material is a term that describes a general type of pavement course). Mr. Toney also informed this paper that what stands as a major challenge for the project is the Junk River which he said is 110 meters.

The framework calls for the project to be executed into three lots which include: 1) from Roberts International Airport to Junk River Bridge; 2) from Junk River Bridge to ELWA junction and; 3) the construction of the Junk River Bridge and the upgrading of the existing bridge.

The civil works with the actual construction of the road project is valued at US$80 million; design and supervision cost valued at US$7 million; and the management and resettlement action plan valued at US$7.5 million,” Madam Kialain explained. “The length of the road is 45 km or 27.8 miles.

The design of the road takes into consideration many factors, including population density, social activities, and the topography, which led the highway into different sections. The new road, when completed, will have a toll location, which is the Junk River Bridge.”

The RIA road is a project that is long overdue because of the safety hazards presented by its narrowness and darkness. The RIA Highway has been a death-trap since it was built in the 1940’s, during World War Two. In the 70 years of its existence, it has claimed the lives of thousands of unfortunate passengers, both Liberians and foreigners alike.

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