Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Correspondent
THE Bulawayo City Council (BCC) has said it needs $690 million to rehabilitate the city’s roads.
Town Clerk Mr Christopher Dube said most of the council’s major roads have outlived their 20 year life span.
“As it is 70 percent of the total network is in poor condition. More than 50 percent of the roads are in poor condition and require immediate rehabilitation. The city’s network is estimated at 2 100km and requires $690 million to bring the roads to good or better condition with $69 million required per year according to our road condition survey,” he said.
Mr Dube apologised to residents for inconveniences caused due to the state of the roads.
He said council had come up with an ambitious road rehabilitation programme.
“Presently, the council has concentrated its maintenance programmes on public transport routes, arterial and collector roads leading to institutions, and the Central Business District, while the bulk of the road network, especially local streets cannot be attended to due to the financial constraints,” Mr Dube.
The Town Clerk called for partnerships with the private sector to rehabilitate roads in line with the recently launched Adopt a Road programme introduced by the municipality.
He said council will be resealing some of its roads as this was four times cheaper than constructing new ones.
Mr Dube said council will continue engaging the Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara) to rehabilitate roads.
He said council will prioritise major roads in its maintenance programmes.
Potholes have become a death trap in the country and in some cases some vehicles have been damaged.
An accident that killed 14 people along the Bulawayo-Gwanda Highway near the National University of Science and Technology last week occured after one of the vehicles hit a pothole.