The National Works Agency (NWA) is ramping up plans for the creation of a shorter route into the central business district of Kingston and St. Andrew by residents of Gordon Town and its environs. The main road leading from Gordon Town to Papine and other sections of the capital city was closed last week, after a significant part of its embankment collapsed during heavy rains.
The NWA advised that persons who need to travel between Gordon Town and other locations were to use the Irish Town or Newcastle Road which passes through Silver Hill Gap, Content and Guava Ridge. The route is the only safe and practical way available to motorists at this time.
Manager, Communication and Customer Services at the NWA, Stephen Shaw says that the agency recognised the challenges that many residents are now having with the longer route and has commenced work on the much shorter route through Savage Pen.
Mr. Shaw says that this road which is some 1.6 kilometers long requires extensive work for it to be safe and useable by the motoring public. The agency commenced work on this road late last week and had several challenges over the weekend, given the hilly terrain and the need to remove several encroachments, including building materials and old vehicles.
Mr. Shaw says that the NWA has moved to acquire some larger pieces of heavy equipment, including excavators and bulldozers. These are expected to assist in cutting through very narrow areas of the corridor in order to allow for two lanes of traffic at a time.
The NWA expect that should there be no unforeseen challenges, the bulk of the activities will be completed within three weeks. It is then that the agency expects that traffic could begin using this corridor as an alternative.
In the meantime, persons are still being encouraged to use the route through Silver Hill Gap, even though it is much longer. Pedestrians are also being reminded that it is extremely dangerous to use the section of road that has broken away, as the drop below is some 80 meters.