Contracts to upgrade the N2 and N3 will be put out to tender over the coming weeks. The upgrade of the N2 will focus on a 55km length, from Lovu River on the South Coast to Umhloti on the North Coast. The N3 upgrade will focus on an 80km section from Durban to Pietermaritzburg.
The work, which is being tendered out in what Sanral described as “reasonably sized packages” for sections of the freeway, will entail the construction of an additional two lanes per direction, as well as the rehabilitation and/or reconstruction of existing pavement layers and the widening of a number of structures.
The upgrading of the N2 and N3 is expected to take between six to eight years to complete as various phases of the project are being let to tender.
Dumisani Nkabinde, the regional manager of Sanral (Eastern Region), said that the agency is committed to the transformation of the engineering and construction sectors through community development projects during the N2 and N3 upgrades. "Investment in road infrastructure upgrades, especially in rural and underdeveloped communities, provides an opportunity for generating economic growth, alleviating poverty, reducing the scourge of inequality and increasing international competitiveness,” he said. “"Sanral is committed to breaking down monopolies in supply chains and ensuring the broad-based participation of black South Africans.
"Clear guidelines and structures have been put in place to ensure that local communities benefit directly, from procuring goods and services from local suppliers to giving preference to the creation of local jobs."
Nkabinde said that Sanral's transformation policy set clearly defined targets for the participation of black contractors, professionals and suppliers in all of its projects.