A near 20 per cent average reduction in travel time has been observed along major thoroughfares for which improvement works have been substantially completed under the Major Infrastructure Development Programme (MIDP).
These are Mandela Highway, and the Hagley Park, Constant Spring and Barbican roadways.
Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, made the disclosure during his contribution to the 2020/21 Budget Debate in the House of Representatives on March 19.
He said that the roadways, which carry the bulk of Kingston’s traffic, have seen an increase in carrying capacity of nearly 100,000 vehicles per day.
In addition, Mr. Holness pointed out that as part of the road improvement project, new street lights and fire hydrants have been installed to improve public safety, along with new water and sewerage lines, which will drive development in communities adjacent to these road corridors.
In the meantime, the Prime Minister noted that under the MIDP, which comes to an end soon, approximately 470 kilometres of roads have been improved and 12 bridges constructed or rehabilitated.
“These investments, supported by the new Urban Traffic Management System, which will begin implementation in financial year 2020/2021, will enable faster, more reliable emergency response and public transport services. [Further] under the Local Works Component, investments of some US$132 million were made to improve roads and community infrastructure,” he said.
Turning to the Southern Coastal Highway Improvement Project (SCHIP) under MIDP, the Prime Minister informed that the design and preparatory work for the Harbour View to Yallahs leg is slated to be completed in July 2020 and civil works commenced shortly thereafter.
SCHIP, which is a strategic initiative to catalyse economic expansion along Jamaica’s southern coast, was launched in November 2019, with five construction contracts valued at $5.37 billion awarded.