By Helen Kadirire
Harare City Council is set to looking to buy a new asphalt plant at an estimated cost of $250 000.
The revelations were made in an Emergency Road Rehabilitation Program meeting held this week between council and the Zimbabwe National Roads Authority (Zinara).
Harare has been repairing roads across the city following a Zinara disbursement of $12,9 million for repairs and maintenance works for 2018.
“The asphalt plant that is there is over 20 years old and is no longer reliable because of the constant breakdowns. Initially there had been some maintenance works that were done but it is now time for us to get a new plant. We made a request for funding and they said they will set aside $500 000 for replacement.
“What is left for us now is to get the quotations and procure the new plant. There was an old quotation which was much more expensive than what came out in the meeting. What council had requested was $800 000 for the new plant but in the meeting it was discovered that the new plant could be acquired for $250 000 plus installation it may not be more than $400 000,” HCC director of works Zvenyika Chawatama said.
He said maintenance of the asphalt plant would have extended its lifespan but its constant breakdowns indicate that it now needs replacement.
Chawatama said trunk roads and major traffic routes will be repaired first as they are used by a lot by the commuters.
“The routes that will be of high priority is the major kombi routes so that people can get to work on time. The high density areas have suffered as there are no longer any roads and we want to put emphasis on them,” he said.
Zinara engineer Moses Juma said the steering committee of the road maintenance project had already approved the purchase of the new plant.
“HCC will do the procurement in-house to ensure that it is given the urgency it deserves. We hope that at least we can get pothole free streets in the city as results of efforts being made in road repairs,” Juma said. Daily News