Elgin Avenue road work to ease congestion

Major expansion work starts this
month on the stretch of Elgin Avenue from the Government Administration
Building to the UBS offices.

According to Works Minister,
Juliana O’Connor-Connolly the aim of the new work is to improve traffic flow
and public safety ahead of the opening of the new government administration
building early next year.

“Improvements are critical if we
are to facilitate doing business in central George Town,” she says.  “With so many government and commercial
offices, as well as banking facilities in the vicinity, Elgin Avenue already experiences
heavy peak hour traffic.”

Many government staffers who
currently work elsewhere will be relocated to the new Elgin Avenue building.

“That means that clients who
normally visit those satellite offices will next year have to attend Elgin
Avenue,” she says.  “As a result, traffic
volume in the area will doubtless increase, again multiplying existing traffic

The new construction will help
alleviate some of the traffic congestion, but will also help to assist in
public safety.  National Roads Authority
director Brian Tomlinson says that sidewalks will be fitted with access ramps
and driveways for the disabled, and a pedestrian crossing will face the new
government administration building.

The project also involves widening
Elgin Avenue from its current two lanes, to three and four lanes in different

“We’ll be adding a turning lane and
a mini roundabout at the intersection with Hospital Road,” he says.

There are additional upgrades that
include widening Humber Avenue and reconstructing sidewalks to provide a
continuous walkway along Elgin Avenue between Hospital Road and Cayman National
Bank roundabouts.

Drainage improvements are slated
this year to reduce Elgin Avenue’s customary flooding during heavy rainfall.

NRA transportation planner Marion
Pandohie says the five-month project is already under way, with recent
improvements being made near Hospital Road.

The project is estimated to cost
approximately $2 million.

The roadwork will mostly take place
at night to minimise inconvenience to the public, with all work to be completed
by February 2011.