The $915, 656 bypass was constructed using Commander's Emergency Response Program funds, which allows commanders to respond to urgent humanitarian relief and reconstruction requirements that will benefit the local population.

"This is an important project," said Keith Jones, the project engineer. "In the past, people detoured the bridge on the river bed. This bypass gives them a safer way to circumvent the bridge and will help maintain traffic flow along highway 4 during the rainy season or in the event of an accident on the two-lane bridge."

Although the bypass is substantially complete, the contractor, Afghan Builders Consortium, still has a few outstanding issues to resolve, like joint sealing and roadway marking. "The rains last week gave us a good opportunity to see how well the bypass will stand up to flood flow," said Jones. "Now we know the project will function as envisioned and travel will not be interrupted."