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The Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) will spend R113.5-million to rehabilitate and reconstruct six bridges damaged during extreme weather conditions earlier this year.

Member of Mayoral Committee for Transport Cllr Nonhlanhla Makhuba said the severe weather conditions made road infrastructure unsafe for both motorists and pedestrians.

“These conditions have had a devastating impact, especially on poor communities, where lives and possessions were lost. People’s cars were also damaged.

“We understand that a well-maintained road infrastructure is essential for economic growth and consequently a part of the City’s risk mitigation strategy,” she said.

The bridges to undergo repairs are Spring Road Bridge, Joe Nhlanhla Bridge, Cork Avenue Bridge, Belgrave Bridge, Bridge Road Bridge and the Bridge on 432 Modderfontein Road.

JRA Managing Director Sean Phillips said the move followed flood impact assessments carried out after heavy rainfalls on 6-7 January 2017 that looked at the extent of the damage and impact or associated risk to life, limb and property.

“Site visits indicated the need for emergency rehabilitation and reconstruction of the six bridges. The extent of damage is estimated at R113.5-million,” Phillips said.

He urged motorists and pedestrians to use alternative routes as the bridges would be closed during the repairs.

“In keeping with JRA’s Service Delivery Improvement Plan, we are fast-tracking these six bridge repair projects. Reconstruction has been scheduled for July 2017, with the exception of Cork Avenue Bridge, where work is already under way,” Phillips added.

The Bridge Road Bridge will be reconstructed at a cost of R60-million as the middle supporting bridge pillar is completely eroded, with its foundation exposed.

The Spring Road and The Cork Avenue bridges will both be demolished and reconstructed at a cost of R30-million. The sewer lines in both bridges remain exposed to excessive erosion. Immediate stabilisation is required to ensure sewage is not discharged into the streams.

The Bridge on 432 Modderfontein Road has sustained extensive damage during heavy rainfalls and was rendered unsafe for long-term use. The estimated cost for repairs is R10-million.

The Joe Nhlanhla Bridge will also be revamped at a cost of R10-million. Emergency measures include extending the bridge structure to increase the volume of water that can flow through it. About R3.5-million will be spent on installing boom gates on Belgrave Bridge to safeguard road users during floods.​