Construction work on the Kazungula Bridge connecting Zambia and Botswana is ongoing and is at 35% complete, a consultant with Daewoo Engineering Company the firm behind the project has said.
Mr Joseph Nyirenda assured said that the works will be completed on schedule as extra working hours are being invested to compensate for the lost time. Kazungula Bridge construction started in 2015 and completion is slated for 2019.
Mr Nyirenda expressed confidence that the bridge will help ease traffic. “trucks carrying cargo to Zambia and Botswana will be cleared in less than a day instead of seven days,” he said.
“Kazungula bridge is a strategic place for the construction of the multimillion-dollar project as it is at a point where Zambia and Botswana interface and connect to other SADC countries.”
And Southern Province permanent secretary Sibanze Simuchoba said the project is an important economic infrastructure which will enhance trade between Zambia and Botswana and the entire region through increased the trade activities.
He said the bridge, which will also have a rail track between two road traffic lanes and pedestrian sidewalks, will help preserve the lifespan of Zambian roads as some bulk and heavy goods will be transported by rail.
“The people of Southern Province will also find it easier to cross into Botswana because whenever you have a border like this, you always have people with relatives on either side of the border and this enhances socio-economic activities between the two countries.
Zambia’s Road Development Agency (RDA) acting communication and corporate director Anthony Mulowa said that construction of one-stop border facilities in Kazungula and Kasane in Zambia and Botswana respectively was also in the pipeline. So far the Kazungula bridge project has already created about 450 jobs.
The Kazungula bridge project comprises the construction of road/rail bridge with a span of 923 meters over the river Zambezi; border facilities in each country and approximately 10 km of bridge approach and access roads. Work on the project started in 2015 and completion is slated for 2019.