SIBU: The stretch along Sungai Kua Bridge to Sungai Arip Bridge under Works Package 08 (WP08) of the Pan Borneo Highway project is set to improve as road diversions are reduced, allowing for smoother travel.
Lebuhraya Borneo Utara (LBU) Sdn Bhd said this in its post on Facebook today under its official page ‘Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak’.
It said the stretch will get better with less temporary diversions and more stretches to be diverted to permanent carriageway in stages.
“While acknowledging the less than comfortable driving experience along this stretch, LBU project manager for WPC08, Baharuddin Samsuddin said these diversions were necessary for culvert replacement work to be carried out.
“From the day we started constructing this stretch, we are now seeing a sharp decrease, from the initial 153 to the current 89 diversions of which 64 diversions have already been completed and converted to the permanent carriageway.
“These diversions are necessary as the contractor has to replace the old culverts where we are talking about one for every 300m stretch. So, we have to create these diversions to allow for this replacement work to take place.
“Once each of these diversions is done, we will demolish it and divert the traffic to the permanent carriageway. The culvert work will then extend to the carriageway next to it but this second carriageway will not pose any hassle to road users as traffic is already shifted to the first carriageway,” he explained.
He said that the remaining 89 diversions would all be demolished in stages and work is expected to be completed by the middle of next year once the culvert work is done.
By then road users will not have to go through the hassle of travelling through these diversions as they will be shifted to the completed first carriageway, albeit up to the binder course layer, he added.
Meanwhile, Baharuddin said 14km of the 20km of carriageway in the Selangau section, paved up to the binder course layer, had already been opened to traffic and more paving works would be carried out.
“As for the Balingian section, the paving progress still continues and currently 5km out of 7.8km have also been paved up to binder course layer and is already open to traffic,” he said.
Moving on to the Selangau Interchange, it is expected to be fully completed by March next year, with work focusing on its deck slabs and reinforcing the earth wall before moving to the subsequent road furniture.
The only interchange along the stretch, Selangau Interchange, will smoothen the flow of traffic for road users traveling from Mukah to Sibu and Bintulu and vice versa once it is completed.
This interchange also functions as an integration direction for the combination of road users either from Sibu, Mukah and Bintulu that will connect them through a new road stretch without disturbing the existing Selangau bazaar.
The main contractor for WP08 is Musyati Mudajaya (MMJV) Sdn Bhd.
On Sunday, Works Minister Baru Bian had expressed dissatisfaction on the construction of Sibu-Miri segment of the Pan Borneo Highway project.
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