THE Lusaka decongestion project is undoubtedly the flagship project of the Patriotic Front’s infrastructure programme in Lusaka.
With the population of the capital city ever growing, it needed a master plan such as the one Government has embarked on to ensure that the movement of people and goods is not unnecessarily delayed.
The roads in Lusaka were planned for a smaller population, hence the congestion being experienced on the roads.
With the economy picking up, more companies opening, Lusaka and other cities being the choice for investment as well as for people to settle and citizens having access to loans and disposable income, there has been a quantum leap on the vehicle population on the roads.
It, therefore, became necessary for Government to prioritise infrastructure development such as the construction and upgrading of roads to facilitate the smooth movement of people, goods and services within Lusaka and beyond.
In Lusaka, the L400 is currently under phase two, which includes the construction of fly-over bridges in selected parts of the city.
Phase one is a success because it has opened up the city and traffic is flowing seamlessly to ensure that very little time is spent on the road.
People should instead use their time productively in their offices, farms, factories and other ventures and should be able to deliver their goods, produce and services timely.
A good road network enables trade, powers businesses, connects workers to their jobs and creates opportunities for citizens.
A case in point is the Makeni road project commissioned by President Edgar Lungu in Lusaka yesterday.
The project, launched in 2018, has so far created 1,000 jobs and facilitated skills and technology transfer to Zambian contractors.
The project, which was necessitated by rapid population increase in Lusaka leading to traffic congestion on major roads, will accelerate the flow of traffic between the north and south segments of the capital city.
It is part of the 91.2 kilometres of roads which are earmarked for either rehabilitation, widening or construction under the L400 project.
Apart from the Makeni fly-over bridge, three other bridges are being built at Munali, Longacres and Arcades roundabouts.
A further 29.3 kilometres are earmarked for widening with a provision of dedicated bus lanes.
President Lungu said construction of roads has enhanced efficiency by reducing the time spent on highways by travellers.
Apart from the L400 project, Government is also implementing the Copperbelt 400 road rehabilitation project, which is upgrading approximately 406km of roads in Copperbelt Province.
Copperbelt 400 road rehabilitation project and the L400 project complement the bigger Link Zambia 8000 roads project proposed to link outlying areas of the country to its 10 provinces.
Besides boosting the country’s economic growth, the Copperbelt 400 and L400 road rehabilitation projects and the Link Zambia 8000 road construction project are expected to create huge employment opportunities for citizens.
Government decisions are based on the evocation of complex developmental models. Variables that are used in these models are
derived from national census, database of resources, economic indicators and similar information.
That is where the Ministry of National Planning, statistics agency and similar organisations come in.
Therefore, Government should continue with well-intended infrastructure projects and should not listen to detractors.
Citizens, the major beneficiaries of the infrastructure projects such as roads, are now reaping the benefits as critics watch in awe.
Infrastructure projects are the inheritance the PF administration will give to the citizens because their benefits will stand the test of time.