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Efforts on to ease Sharjah congestion

24 Apr 11, Gulf News

Dubai: Traffic congestion at the National Paints roundabout area in Sharjah will be a thing of the past once the Ministry of Public Works revamps it with the addition of two more lanes on the flyover in each direction in two years' time.

A senior official at the ministry said roadworks at National Paints roundabout will start by the end of June. Motorists will be able to use the existing lanes on the bridge.

"Emirates Road was built five years ago and today we are improving it by adding five interchanges on this main road, to meet the [Abu Dhabi] strategic plan of 2030," Dr Abdullah Bilhaif Al Nuaimi, Undersecretary of Ministry of Public Works, said yesterday.

The project in Sharjah costing Dh1 billion was divided in three phases and covers approximately nine kilometres. The first phase of preliminary roadworks at Maleha area and Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Interchange was carried out in October 2010.

Three interchanges

The second phase of the project was approved last week, he said, adding that construction work will commence after three weeks. The second phase consists of upgrading the three interchanges of University City, Sharjah Ring Road and Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed.

The third phase will also focus on upgrading and widening the interchanges of National Paints and Sharjah Bypass Road. The whole project is expected to be completed in 750 days.

"The project is the most challenging part because it is the most crowded and congested areas, and we want to provide a good network connection from the northern and southern region. Our aim is to make the lives of commuters easier so that they have good access to anywhere they want to go," he said.

He said the National Paints flyover now consists of three lanes in each direction, which will be expanded to five lanes in each direction. Dr Al Nuaimi stressed that while the construction work is carried out, the lanes will not be closed and motorists will still be able to use the existing three lanes in addition to two road diversions that run parallel to Emirates Road, which includes the Fourth Industrial Street and the school district in Mowaileh.

"We have agreed with the military to use the road at Al Falah Camp as an alternative diversion route during the project, which will be either in September or October this year, after they leave the premises," he said.

Dr Al Nuaimi stressed that the works on Emirates Road also includes the construction of a storm water project, in addition to upgrading and connecting the existing networks. "We are taking each project at a time so that we don't divert traffic too much," he added.

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