Apr 25 , 2020

Alemayehu Ketema General Contractor, a local grade-one firm, secured a project to construct the first ever, inner-city asphalt road in Bale Robe town, Oromia Regional State, for 1.1 billion Br.

The road project, which is divided into 15 lots, covers 15Km and is expected to be completed in four years. The cost of the project will be covered from the town's budget and a contribution from the community.

The inner-city asphalt road, which is the first for the town, will be two-layer and 20 metres wide. The two-lane road, which costs 73 million Br a kilometre, will also have a one-metre central median, side drainage, sidewalks and box culverts. It is expected to create 1,500 temporary and 15 permanent jobs.

Alemayehu Ketema, a company that was established in 1989 and is currently working on the construction of Bale Robe Industrial Park, Delo-Mena Irrigation Dam and a 63Km road in Dodola, signed the contract for the project in January after winning a bid that was announced by the Oromia Roads Authority. It vied with close to 10 bidders.

The company, which started the construction of three lots of the road last month, hired two subcontractors to execute the project with the planned schedule, according to site manager Biruk Negash.

The company started construction after taking 20pc of the total value as a down payment and subcontracted some of the work to MSD and Deraro construction companies for the project.

So far, the construction of 1.9Km of the road has begun, and the project has reached four percent completion, according to Samson Teshome, head of Bale Robe Construction Bureau. The contractor is expected to complete 30pc of the road before the end of the current fiscal year.

Yididiya Engineering Consultants Plc, a local company that engages with architects, consultants and engineering services, designed the road five years ago. The project was not kicked off at the time, however, due to budget constraints and political situations in the Regional State, according to Samson.

The asphalt road coverage of the town is seven kilometres. The town's construction bureau is building 4.7Km of cobblestone road as well as five kilometres of gravel road on a yearly basis.

Paragon Engineering, another local consulting firm, is currently supervising the construction of the road.

The road will improve Bale's economy and access to social services in the town, according to Shabu Abubakar, communications head at Bale Robe town.

"It will also benefit residents of the town as well as the surrounding villages," said Shabu.

PUBLISHED ON Apr 25,2020 [ VOL 21 , NO 1043]

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