Traffic, Street Lights Need Urgent Attention – Survey

Harare City Council should allocate more resources towards traffic and street lighting across the city as most of the lights are not functional, posing a threat to both human and vehicular traffic.

Apart from installing new traffic lights, council has been doing little in terms of trying to repair existing ones.

A survey carried out across the city showed that most traffic lights and general public lighting needs replacing.

There are traffic lights in the Central Business District (CBD) that are frequently down and some have not been repaired for years. A case in point are traffic lights at the intersection of Julius Nyerere Way and Robson Manyika Street.

A few metres down the intersection of Julius Nyerere and Kenneth Kaunda, the traffic lights were showing red in all directions causing confusion among motorist and pedestrians.

Our news crew yesterday observed a number of traffic lights that were malfunctioning along Willowvale road, High Glen Road and Samora Machel Avenue.

At Marimba police intersection, the only reminder that there were once traffic light are poles on which the traffic lights were mounted.

At Warren Park traffic lights along Harare-Bulawayo road traffic lights also were malfunctioning with only two working out of a possible eight.

The city is also battling to provide street lighting as some of the solar lights installed are no longer operational after thieves stole solar panels and batteries.

In some cases were street lights that are still working no longer have switches to turn the lights off during the day and are always on.

Harare City Council’s corporate communications manager, Mr Michael Chideme said council was looking into the issues.

“Council’s plan is to provide public lighting coverage in all the areas under its jurisdiction. At present 40 percent of street lighting is operational and 80 percent of High Mast Tower Lighting. Public lighting provision is an integral part of the council’s Strategic Plan,” he said.

He said plans were afoot to repair the vandalised street lights including those along Airport road.

In terms of installing street lights, Mr Chideme said backlogs are going to be addressed through our strategic plans which are anchored on capital expenditure from the council coffers and partnerships with private players.

The local authority is targeting Rugare, Westlea, Kuwadzana Phase 3, Kuwadzana Extension, Dzivaresekwa, Cold Comfort, Crowborough North, Budiriro 3, Msasa Park, Mbare and Mabvuku.

“Significant progress has been achieved with 61 new high mast tower lights having been installed to date. Construction is complete for all the tower lights with some still to be commissioned.

The new tower lights have been installed in Rugare, Cold Comfort, Crowborough North, Budiriro and Msasa Park.

“This has been achieved through combined effort with a developer as the case with new tower lights in Budiriro- CABS housing development,” Mr Chideme said.

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