R49 million road extension

Kuils River residents have welcomed a R49 million project to extend Belhar Main Road in an attempt to ease traffic congestion in Highbury and surrounding areas.

The project is set to kick off next month and should take 20 months if all goes according to plan, says the City.

The plan is to link Highbury Road to the Stellenbosch Arterial by extending Belhar Main Road from Highbury Road up to Stellendale Road in Kuils River.

Wards 11 and 19 will be affected.

Highbury Ratepayers’ and Residents’ Association chairman Edmund Duplooy said the community of Highbury was excited about the project.

“We have been waiting for this for a long time as we were promised the extension would happen in 2015 already, but we waited and waited. This time, we are trusting that the City of Cape Town will stick to their promise,” he said.

Kuils River residents had endured horrible traffic jams in recent years and public transport was not a safe alternative, he said.

“Housing developments have been brought to Highbury, which means more people have moved into the community. It’s about time they (the City) come up with a plan to solve traffic issues,” he said.

City officials met with community leaders on Tuesday July 16 to discuss details of the project.

An open day for the public will be held at the Western Cape Sport School in Nooiensfontein Road, Kuils River, on Monday August 12, from 2pm to 7pm.

Highbury resident Graham Raatz said the extension of the Belhar Main Road was necessity, but he cautioned that it would make more space for speeding motorists.

“The presence of law enforcement needs to be beefed up in Kuils River especially along the new road,” he said.

In a statement, mayoral committee member for transport Felicity Purchase said the 1.45km extension would have tarred pavements along its length and four traffic circles.

“The new road will be constructed as a dual carriageway from Stellenbosch Arterial to the first traffic circle at Stellendale Road, and thereafter as a single carriageway road.”

She said: “Traffic congestion in Highbury, and especially on Belhar Main Road has increased significantly over the years. To address this, we have decided to provide a link between Highbury Road and Stellendale Road to improve access for residents and local businesses.

“Once completed Belhar Main Road will allow for more people to enter and leave the area and support the development of the local economy. Also, this project forms part of the City’s efforts to build strategic roads and links to relieve traffic congestion in the worst affected areas in Cape Town.”