World Class Traffic Interchange to Change Face of Manzini
Some key features of the city will have to give way to the exciting development
As part of the ongoing construction of the Manzini-Mbadlane dual carriageway; a national Government driven project that is set to improve the road infrastructure profile of the Kingdom of Eswatini, construction of a state-of-the-art traffic interchange is underway within the Manzini urban area. Construction of the infrastructure, which civil engineering experts commonly refer to as a ‘spaghetti’ traffic interchange due to the aesthetic appeal of the end product, commenced last month and, all things constant, will be completed in the year 2022. The project is being carried out by Stefanutti Stocks. Unlike the first phase of the MR3 highway project, which runs from Manzini to Mbadlane area outside the city, the traffic interchange project is fully within the Manzini urban area. It is being constructed at the Manzini Golf Course next to Coates Valley Township and Mangwaneni informal settlement in the eastern part of the urban area.
Motorists are urged to reduce speed when approaching the project site and also observe all traffic signage that has been installed along the road. That will help avoid the occurrence of traffic accidents. It suffices to mention that the main continuous traffic flow on the interchange will be connecting the Mbadlane-Manzini traffic onto the Central Distributor road and further up onto MR3 West at the Nazarene intersection; with on-ramps and off-ramps into the city centre via the existing Manzini traffic circle. Manzini citizens and the general members of the public are notified that there are a number of key features of the city that will have to be sacrificed in one way or the other in order to give way to the gigantic infrastructure which will change the face of Manzini for the better. What remains vital is to focus attention on the bigger picture; which is the value add that it will bring to the Kingdom of Eswatini and the City of Manzini as part of the first world status trajectory. Key features that will be impacted include the following;
…RECREATIONAL PARK NEAR MANGWANENI
Part of the traffic interchange will see the construction of an off-ramp road that will take traffic from the Manzini traffic circle, through the recreational park, and connecting to the Central Distributor Road (commonly referred to as the Mavuso bypass road). A large portion of the recreational park will be taken up by this colossal development; rendering it unusable. However, the traffic circle itself will not be affected. Some earthworks have already commenced at the recreational park and removal of the park furniture has also started. Pedestrians who usually access the city through the park are urged to take extra caution when walking near the site and also adhere to instructions that will be given by the contractor.
…MANZINI CLUB TRAFFIC LIGHTS
The Manzini Club traffic lights, which are the first set of traffic lights that one sees as they drive into the City of Manzini from the eastern part of the city, will be removed. With the interchange in place there will be no need for traffic lights at the subject site as motorists will be able to drive through seamlessly; thereby reducing travel time.
…MANZINI GOLF COURSE
The traffic interchange will take up the entire lower part of the Manzini Golf Course. As a result, some of the holes will have to be relocated. The golf course will not be destroyed in its entirety but there will be some changes regarding its shape in terms of the location of the holes. More details relating to the extent of the changes to the golf course will be shared in due course.
Jacaranda trees have since way back in the day been synonymous with the City of Manzini. The subject site, particularly near Inyoni Park and Coates Valley, also has a number of these precious plants which turn the city purple-blue every spring season. Construction of the MR3 highway will see the removal of these Jacaranda trees in order to make way for construction of side roads (also referred to as service roads); which are an important feature of any dual carriageway the world over. Service roads are the roads that are constructed on either side of the highway for use by locals in order to easily access their properties. They also enable residents of the adjacent properties to avoid having to connect directly onto the ever busy highway; thus minimizing chances of accidents.
…NEW, EXCITING FEATURES TO EXPECT
The upgrading of the MR3 dual carriageway will come with a number of exciting new features. These include the following;
- Improved aesthetics of the City of Manzini as a result of the ‘spaghetti’ traffic interchange.
- A number of service roads that will make it easier for residents of adjacent townships to access the city without having to join the busy highway.
- Installation of traffic lights at the Extension 6 cross-junction.
- Construction of a traffic circle along Acacia Street in Coates Valley Township.
A four-lane MR3 highway with a wider paved and decorated median plus street lighting.