Guyana’s first major roundabout which is being constructed at the intersection of the Seawall Road, Rupert Craig Highway, Public Road Kitty, Vlissengen Road, JB Lachmansingh Road and Carifesta Avenue, is expected to be finished within six months, the contractor says.
The contract to build the roundabout at the junction was awarded in January to S. Jagmohan Hardware Supplies and Construction Service and was pegged at $78.9 million.
While preliminary works have started on the site, an official from the company related to Stabroek News yesterday that they are still waiting to confirm some dimensions and measurements from the Ministry of Public Infrastructure.
However, the official related that the project is earmarked to take six months, but they will be working towards having it completed earlier.
When extensive work starts on the project, the official said, the traffic will be diverted for a short time since the intersection will not be available. As a result, commuters will no longer be able to utilize the eastern ends of the Seawall Road and Carifesta Avenue; the beginning of the Rupert Craig Highway; the western end of Public Road Kitty, the northern ends of Vlissengen and JB Lachmansingh roads. Thus, all traffic to and from the East Coast will be redirected through Kitty to circumvent the construction site.
The official was unable to say when such extensive works, which will result in the redirection of traffic, will commence.
The construction of the roundabout is expected to create an easier flow of traffic at the intersection which is used by the majority of traffic exiting/entering Georgetown to/from the East Coast of Demerara.
However, some drivers have expressed their concern and doubts about the forthcoming roundabout. Their apprehensions centre on the fact that not enough sensitizing is being done for road users, the majority of whom do not understand how to use a roundabout.
“Roundabouts aren’t very simple to use, and I could see many accidents and confusion happening, especially with the way Guyanese drivers are. I just hope that they take the initiative and educate people on how to use them properly,” was one driver’s comment.
Another opined that the Government should embark on a national awareness programme which will teach all drivers how to properly traverse roundabouts.
“I think it’s a great idea to bring one here. They are very useful and should be used at other parts of the City, but it’s a new concept and Guyanese are not known for driving with their heads, but their feet. What we need to do to ensure that this thing is effective as it is meant to be, is to teach people how to use it. Ensure that they are well equipped with the knowledge before it is finished,” a driver, who identified himself as Ken, observed.