Johannesburg Mayor, Kabelo Gwamanda, says the city has appointed a contractor to begin the rehabilitation of Lillian Ngoyi Street, formerly known as Bree street.
Gwamanda gave an update on the rehabilitation of the road following last year’s gas explosion.
On the 19th of July, community members in the Joburg CBD were greeted by a loud noise as the renowned “Bree Street” ripped open with taxis and vehicles having flipped over.
The tragedy claimed the life of one person and left 48 others injured.
The mayor says a budget of R136 million has been set aside for the project with prospects that it could change as new developments occur.
The rehabilitation initiative is expected to end on the 15th of December.
Methane gas has been blamed for the deadly explosion which raised fears of possible terrorist underground work and heightened concerns over the deteriorating infrastructure in the country’s economic hub, among South Africans.
Gwamanda says the contractors who are already on site will begin with the excavation and the removal of rubble and damaged infrastructure.
He says the road will be fitted with gas, smoke and heat detectors as well as ventilation systems, to prevent similar incidents from happening.
The mayor also revealed that the rehabilitation of the famous “Bree Street” will result in job creation.
“The construction phase will deliver critical employment opportunities for an estimated 80 residents and business opportunities for several Small Micro Medium Enterprises.”
The mayor says this marks the beginning of a new era for Lillian Ngoyi Street, the high court precinct and the inner-city as a whole.
The explosion in pictures:
Written by: Lindiwe Mpanza