Transport minister Fikile Mbalula says that his department is committed to making upgrades to two of the country’s national highways – the N2 and N3.
In a media briefing on Thursday (1 October), Mbalula said that these upgrades will primarily be made in KwaZulu-Natal and will see the expansion of existing routes to better cope with the flow of traffic.
The revamp of the N2 will focus on a 55 km stretch from Lovu River on the South Coast to Umdloti on the North Coast, while the N3 will look into an 80 km section from Durban to Pietermaritzburg, he said.
“These upgrades will include the widening of the N2 and N3 carriageways, with four or five lanes in each direction, and the reconfiguration of most major interchanges along these route sections,” said Mbalula.
The transport minister said that construction costs for these upgrades is estimated to be about R10 billion for the N2 and R18.4 billion for the N3. The combined projects are estimated to take up to 10 years to complete.
“Government has invested billions of rands building roads across the length and breadth of this country, from major centres of economic activity to our most rural communities,” said Mbalula.
The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) has previously indicated that it plans to make to the upgrades as part of a revamp of the country’s roads design.
It added that the improved roads will strengthen the logistics and transport corridor between South Africa’s main industrial hubs, improve access to Durban’s export and import facilities, and raise efficiency along the corridor including access to the Dube TradePort Special Economic Zone.