200km of roads to be asphalted in Kandahar city
KANDAHAR CITY (PAN): By 2012, 200km of roads in and around Kandahar city will be asphalted, according to the public works director.
The asphalting began in 2010 with the support of the Kandahar municipality and the international community, Abdul Mohammad Ihsan told Pajhwok Afghan News.
During 2010, about 30km of roads were asphalted at a cost of $3 million (135.4 million afghanis), financed by the municipality and UN-Habitat, the United Nations agency for human settlements.
In subsequent years, the amount of roads will increase to 50km, he said. And by 2012, 200km roads will be asphalted in Kandahar city, the provincial capital of southern Kandahar province.
During 2010, 25km of roads had been renovated, 68km of roads restructured, while 6,000 square metres of road edges had been paved. Ihsan added the department has also cleaned 110 cubic metres of irrigation canals and removed over 30 cubic metres of debris from the canals.
They have also set up a scale on the Herat-Kandahar highway to weigh vehicles before they enter the city to prevent heavy loads on roads.
Ihsan said another 22km stretch of the south ring road had been asphalted at a cost of $6 million and the rest will be renovated with the support of the international community.
The ring road is 49km long, and links Spin Boldak to Shor Anadam, passing through Zakir Sharif, Minar Kali, Panjwai district and Herat-Kandahar road.
With the ring road, trucks will be redirected away from the capital which should lessen rush hour traffic in Kandahar city, he said.
Ihsan said Japan had provided new equipment to the public works department and the newly paved roads are of high quality.
However he complained that the public in many areas did not look after the roads and in some cases even damaged them, which meant the public works department would have to pay to fix the roads again.
Residents of Kandahar city said the construction of roads seemed to have sped up.
Naeemi, a resident of Kabul Shah, said his area was always crowded and that roads were unpaved. In the winter they were full of mud puddles and in the summer it was so dusty.
However, such problems were a thing of the past as all roads in the area have been paved, he said.
During the last nine years, with the support of the Asian Development Bank, and the US and Japanese government development arms, as well as other countries and agencies, about 5,000km of roads have been constructed in the country.
However, the ongoing war and low quality of the roads in some parts of the country has meant many have been damaged again.
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