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Old December 1st, 2016, 01:57 PM   #41
Marsupalami
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From my perspective:
The inland route does seem daunting when you look at the 9 hour trip to get to East London from Durbs ( especially if you are an international self drive couple and want to do Durban, Wild Coast, Garden Route and Cape Town in one long road trip )
The lack of a road that shortens the time from Margate/Sth Coast has hindered port St Johns from getting a better tourism and development slice of the pie or certainly the "big" money and investment dries up at Port Edward, and doesn't show its face till Cintsa

Admittedly:
there are ecological consequences. Though it seems to me that the Transkei is so buggered by overgrazing that only the high hilltops, and the deep valleys have any trees/native forest left on them.
I cant see how a road could do any more harm than 4 million people all living rural existence without much in the way of dedication toward soil retention and appropriate animal agriculture practices and general conservationism?

At least the road may bring some form of prosperity in terms of the short term employment for building it, and long term more investment coming their way - and the ultimate hope of one day getting less people to rely on animals for survival/status/wealth and the massive damage they are doing to the land.

No doubt the road will do damage, but its the multinational dune/strip mining conglomerates that change names and faces every few years that are the real danger. Right now rural Trankeians are battling with corrupt chiefs and local govt, intimidation, beathings and even murder by paid-for thugs, and lack of media interest and face loosing traditional, beautiful land to these evil companies who extract, scar and poison the land and water.

Last edited by Marsupalami; December 2nd, 2016 at 11:32 AM.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 04:04 PM   #42
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It's ridiculous that we are even discussing the importance of a road. It really should be self-evident.
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Old December 6th, 2016, 09:09 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nostra View Post
It's ridiculous that we are even discussing the importance of a road. It really should be self-evident.
Given where the road is going to run, it is of vital importance that we discuss it if you ask me.

The Wild Coast is a hugely sensitive ecosystem and should be protected.

We also know that SANRAL aren't the best judges of what is necessary or required so more than a bit of skepticism is to be expected.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 12:08 AM   #44
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and the fact that they want toll booths in south durban to pay for the rest of the entire Eastern Cape route. cross funding from the MOST tolled province. Are there even ANY tolls in the EC today?
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Old December 7th, 2016, 06:51 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by dysan1 View Post
and the fact that they want toll booths in south durban to pay for the rest of the entire Eastern Cape route. cross funding from the MOST tolled province. Are there even ANY tolls in the EC today?
That has been shelved for the "forseeable future", its one of the reasons they are pushing ahead. The legal challenge from the KZN side has fallen away so basically the well funded legal challenge is gone and all they are left with is the poor EC communities.

I personally don't see a toll road through the EC like that being all that heavily used, or if it is it won't be to any benefit of the communities in the area.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 09:28 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToxicBunny View Post
Given where the road is going to run, it is of vital importance that we discuss it if you ask me.

The Wild Coast is a hugely sensitive ecosystem and should be protected.

We also know that SANRAL aren't the best judges of what is necessary or required so more than a bit of skepticism is to be expected.


Not at the expense of the communities living there. South Africans come first. We should not glamorise underdevelopment under the pretext of caring for the environment.

One can argue that every road or development is ecologically damaging to an extent. Some of the development that is taking place in Umhlanga is on ecologically sensitive dunes and coastal forests for example and yet you are not so vociferous in your objections.

The N2 in the Western Cape cuts through some of the most sensitive and beautiful nature in SA. And yet, it's what makes the road special. It is what makes the Garden route special.

The sensitive balancing of modern infrastructure and nature is what progress is all about. I personally feel that the infrastructure enhances natural setting. The soaring cable stayed bridge is what that part of EC needs. It will not only be a functional bridge it will be a tourist icon. Imagine the Garden Route will extend for more than 500km's rather than just 200km's or so, imagine the tourism opportunities this will open up in the Wild Coast.

Lastly, skepticism is fine, but it must be informed and constructive. And SANRAL is not known for that, yes amongst the ignorant masses it might, but amongst engineers and other knowledgeable stakeholders it's held up as one of the best road agencies, which designs some of the best roads on the planet. Our road network is testament to that.
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Old December 7th, 2016, 10:55 AM   #47
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Couldn't agree more.
Its not so much the road that will harm things as the 3-4 million people living in poverty with un-environmentally friendly practices that are stripping the topsoil, and using every stick of wood for heating and cooking.
Decades of governmental blindness to the plight of Transkeians has lead to an bleak picture for the ecology there.

This road is at least a way of entering the area, and ideally bringing more prosperity through onward investment, employment, and wealth creation through tourism industry.
Once that happened, there will be more presence of mind to retain what is left of the forests in the river valleys.

It will also be a good thing for Port St Johns, which I see will flourish.
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Old December 13th, 2016, 03:19 PM   #48
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This makes interesting reading, and proves there are always at least two points of any discussion!
http://www.wildcoast.co.za/deadline-...n2-toll-road-0

Deadline for comments is 22 Jan
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Old March 20th, 2017, 06:10 AM   #49
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N2 Wild Coast project to start in the next six months - Sanral
Mar 08 2017 11:01
Roslyn Baatjies, Netwerk 24

Cape Town - The South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) has welcomed Eastern Cape Premier Phumulo Masualle's support for the N2 Wild Coast project.

“Sanral welcomes the province’s support for the project, which also has overwhelming support from local communities. The fact that it was mentioned during the State of the Province Address indicates that it is considered strategic to the province’s development agenda,” said Sanral spokesperson Vusi Mona.

Work is expected to start within the next six months and the project should be completed by 2021.

Monsa said upgrading the Wild Coast road would help unlock the Eastern Cape’s economic potential and contribute substantially to job-creating sectors such as eco-tourism, agriculture and manufacturing. The upgrading of the 410km stretch will cut the travelling time between East London and Durban by up to three hours.

...Poor communities along the Pondoland coast will benefit from better access to towns, shorter travel times and lower travel costs. In a survey by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in 2015, 99% of the residents supported the project.

Mona said a comprehensive impact study had been done and conservation experts have been assigned to protect the biological diversity and natural heritage of the Wild Coast.

Two bridges on the route, those over the Msikaba River and the Mtentu River just outside Xolobeni, will be among the biggest in Africa.

The project will create 6 800 direct and about 28 000 indirect job opportunities during the construction phase, Mona said.

http://www.fin24.com/Economy/n2-wild...anral-20170308
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Old August 30th, 2017, 08:26 AM   #50
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ror8EN-_rSI

Bridge Network Manager Edwin Kruger takes viewers through the architectural representations of the Mtentu River Bridge just outside Xolobeni, Eastern Cape.
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Old September 13th, 2017, 06:15 PM   #51
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R1.634-billion Mtentu Bridge tender awarded
Construction of the first of two N2 Wild Coast mega bridges should start early in November.


An architectural impression of the Mtentu Bridge.


THE R1.634-billion tender for the Mtentu Bridge, one of two mega bridges to be built as part of the South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) N2 Wild Coast road project, has been awarded.

However, the second mega bridge, spanning the Msikaba River, is to be retendered.

About 80 percent of this new 560km route between Durban and East London will follow the existing R61. The two bridges will be part of approximately 90km of the new route, the so-called ‘greenfields’ sections.

According to Sanral communications manager, Vusi Mona, the Mtentu Bridge tender had been awarded to the Aveng Strabag Joint Venture (JV). The JV partners were Aveng Grinaker-LTA, a major South African-based construction company, and Strabag, a leading construction company in Europe with extensive experience in major balanced cantilever methodology bridge construction. Building was set to start early in November and was scheduled to take about 40 months, he said.

The Mtentu Bridge will be a multi-spanned concrete structure approximately 1 130m long. It will comprise a 260m main span and two 150m secondary spans constructed as a balanced cantilever on the two main piers that will be approximately 160m high.

A further total of 570m of approach viaducts will be constructed on either side of the central three spans using incremental launching methods. It will be higher than the Bloukrantz Bridge, making it the highest bridge in Africa and the southern hemisphere once complete.

The second bridge will consist of a cable-stayed 580m-long structure spanning the deep Msikaba Gorge.

At 590m, its main span will be the longest main span in Africa and the southern hemisphere, although there are some southern hemisphere and African bridges that have longer total spans.

However, Mr Mona said there had been been no fully responsive tenders for this bridge.

...The proposal to build the N2 Wild Coast toll road was first put forward more than 12 years ago and has been dogged by controversy. Local communities have expressed many social concerns and there have been objections from the green lobby as the greenfields sections, including the bridges, will be constructed through an extremely environmentally sensitive area. However, Sanral has always contended that the road would bring much-needed development to an impoverished area.

...Discussing the Mtentu Bridge, he said the construction of the 1.1km long bridge in a remote location was a major undertaking that required specialised engineering skills and building techniques.

The bridge formed the backbone of the greenfields portion of the N2 Wild Coast road project, he said. He described the project as a national priority under coordination and direction of the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission (PICC). It was one of Government’s 18 Strategic Integrated Projects to support economic development and address service delivery in the poorest provinces.

...“By improving the travel time between Durban and East London by up to three hours for heavy freight and by providing a high mobility route through an area that is extremely isolated and under-served by road infrastructure, the route will have significant social and economic benefits and will act as a catalyst for local and regional development,” he said.

The project would be a major job creator in an area with an extremely high unemployment rate.

Sanral’s direct job creation forecast was 1.8-million man-days or 8 000 full time equivalent jobs over the construction period of four to five years.

More than R400 million would be allocated to wages for unskilled, semi-skilled and skilled workers employed directly on the entire N2 Wild Coast road project, he said. A further R1.5 billion was destined for local small, medium and micro enterprises comprising local contractors and local suppliers of goods and services to the road and bridge construction projects.

http://southcoastherald.co.za/232847...ender-awarded/
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Old October 24th, 2017, 03:04 AM   #52
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Lone ranger can fight the state to scrap Wild Coast toll road

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Pretoria - The leader of the Baleni community in Pondoland took on the lone battle to fight the multi- billion-rand controversial N2 Wild Coast toll road, which is supposed to connect the major cities in the Eastern Cape.

Sinegugu Zukulu is adamant he will not be bulldozed by the government, the South African National Roads Agency Limited or the N2 Wild Coast Consortium in giving in to the toll road. which is due to run partially through his ancestral land. Zukulu and his community were from the start opposed to the 560km toll road extending from the N2 Gonubie interchange near East London to the N2 Isipingo interchange, south of Durban.

They steadfastly refused to give up the land, which they have been living on for generations. The community felt that while they needed improved local roads, they did not need a sleek highway, which they feared was being built for ulterior purposes. They feared that the toll road was planned to assist proposed mining in the region, against which they were also vigorously opposed.

The battle for the ancestral land eventually led to divisions within the community, who had mostly meanwhile abandoned their legal fight - all but Zukulu. In a first round victory for him, the high court in Pretoria gave him the go-ahead to fight his legal battle further. Zukulu’s aim is to take on the giants and ultimately to have the toll road project set aside by the court.
More at: https://www.iol.co.za/news/south-afr...-road-11667640
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