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JIS News

The National Works Agency (NWA) has stepped up efforts to improve traffic flow at all congestion-prone areas across the country, particularly in urban centres such as Montego Bay, Spanish Town and Kingston.
Last year, the agency effected changes to the movement of traffic in the corporate area and a number of roads were either widened or rehabilitated as part of this initiative. Roads addressed included Half-Way-Tree Road, the Dunrobin Avenue and Constant Spring Road junction, the Constant Spring/Shortwood Road junction and the Barbican Road/Russell Heights junction.
“This was part and parcel of a bigger traffic management plan that we have for the city of Kingston,” said Stephen Shaw, Manager of Communication and Customer Service at the NWA.
“We notice that in Kingston, there is a heavy north-south movement, persons moving from uptown to downtown and vice versa, and there are only a few choice roadways that are being used. We have therefore been looking at this and within the next few months, we should be in a position to announce how we intend to proceed,” he stated further, adding that work under the traffic management programme for Kingston would continue to be rolled out in stages, but in a concerted way.
In Spanish Town, work has started following a comprehensive assessment of the traffic situation. “We have started by erecting traffic signals along Twickenham Park Road and at the Sligoville intersection. We have also erected signals at Barrett Road and Burke Road,” Mr. Shaw outlined.
The traffic signals have not yet been commissioned, and the Communications Manager advised that the NWA must first complete some additional preparatory work in the area before the commissioning could take place. He noted, however, that the traffic lights should be turned on in the very near future.
Continuing, Mr. Shaw told JIS News that the NWA had identified some other changes to be effected in Spanish Town, but these would be discussed with key stakeholders before any decision could be made.
“We need to get the input of the St. Catherine Parish Council and persons in the business community…so that whatever modifications might become necessary can be made, so we can all agree on the way forward and work to maximise the benefits from these changes,” he said.
As for Montego Bay, the works agency has mapped the area and identified what needs to be done, Mr. Shaw informed, but discussions are yet to be held with the local authorities and other stakeholders in the region.