Sanral and its cronies are determined to build a wildly expensive new route to Durban, when sensible repairs would do the trick. By Barry Sergeant.
As South Africa’s democracy “matures”, so the legacies of all kinds of interesting prior relationships continue to ripen. One project that cannot escape attention is the proposed N3 highway bypass that will effectively turn Harrismith into yet another South African ghost town, consigning thousands of people to unemployment, and tens of thousands of their dependants to destitution. That’s apart from the extra billions that it’s going to cost the South African road user.
If state roads agency Sanral and its crony road construction companies have their way, the N3 will be routed down an entirely redesigned and reconstructed De Beer’s Pass, rather than the existing Van Reenen Pass at Harrismith, as the gateway across the escarpment. If this project proceeds, an estimated R5 billion (more likely R10bn by the time it’s completed) will have to be found to fund the rerouting of the N3 highway between Johannesburg and Durban.