USACE engineers tackle Kirkuk road projects
November 21, 2009
- The Kirkuk office is serving as construction design manager for the Kirkuk Ring Road project and the manager of "Village to Market" road rep
- . USACE, through the Economic Support Fund, provided $4.3 million for the engineering design of the new roadway.
Kirkuk, Iraq - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Gulf Region District, Kirkuk Resident Office is seriously delving into the road construction business these days. The Kirkuk office is serving as construction design manager for the Kirkuk Ring Road project and the manager of "Village to Market" road repair project.
The $130 million, two-year Kirkuk Ring Road project is an aggressive 31-kilometer highway extension, designed to create a southern access bypass road from the Sulamaniya Interchange to the Taza Road Interchange. The three-phase project is being funded by oil revenues from the provincial government. USACE, through the Economic Support Fund, provided $4.3 million for the engineering design of the new roadway. The design also includes the construction of five highway interchanges and four bridges on the six-lane road. The project also includes the construction of culverts for gas pipelines and future utility easements, a right-of-way fence and landscaping of the median strips and ramps.
Lt. Col. Edgar Montalvo, Department of State Project Reconstruction Transition Team Liaison, says that the Ring Road is a significant step for the city of Kirkuk. "This project is one of Iraq's largest transportation projects and allows travelers navigating through Kirkuk from the north, east and south to bypass the city's center," Montalvo said. "It will have an enormous impact on relieving traffic congestion by redirecting automobile and truck traffic from using Kirkuk's downtown streets, with the end result of allowing essential mobile services unfettered travel through the downtown district."
Lt. Col. Anthony Jocius, a project manager in the Kirkuk Resident Office, said that success of the project denotes a long term positive step for local residents. "This project is a major collaboration of both Arab and Kurdish people living in a Governorate for the most part in harmony," Jocius said. "It's this type of project that brings people together for a common benefit."
With the backing of the Project Reconstruction Team, the Kirkuk office is also managing the resurfacing of over 81 kilometers of roads in 17 different locations in northeastern Iraq under the "Village to Market" road repair project.
The $2.76 million project, funded through the Commander's Emergency Relief Fund, is designed to provide a network of improved rural roadways to give residents access to local and regional markets, according to engineers. By enhancing roadways, planners feel that the easier access to rural areas will bolster local markets and stimulate commerce among other villages: thus fostering agricultural and economic growth within the province. The reconditioned roads are also designed to improve access to the villages by emergency response teams.
The project is divided into six separate contracts and calls for hard-packed gravel resurfacing of the roads.