File Photo: Greater Cairo's Ring Road (Photo: Al-Ahram )
Egyptian Transport Minister Kamel El-Wazir said on Thursday that an ongoing development of the Cairo Ring Road will expand it from eight lanes to 14, or from 37.2 metres to 60 metres in width.
El-Wazir’s remarks came during a cabinet meeting to discuss the development work on the ring road. The meeting was headed by Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly and saw the attendance of the ministers of electricity, petroleum, and housing as well as the governors of Cairo, Giza, and Qalioubiya.
According to a cabinet statement, Madbouly said that the transport ministry is currently developing the ring road, which is the most important road in terms of traffic volume and density in the governorates that make up Greater Cairo. President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has ordered the work be accomplished in record time, he also said.
The prime minister said the work will “greatly contribute to relieving pressure on internal roads, which in turn will push to increase the flow of traffic liquidity in Greater Cairo.”
According to El-Wazir, EGP 8 billion has been allocated to develop and expand the 106-kilometre highway.
The ongoing work on the stretch of road between the Autostrad and Mariotiya, which has a length of 12 kilometres, is nearly 20 percent complete, while work on the 24 kilometre stretch from Saad El-Shazly Tunnel to the intersection of the Cairo-Alexandria Agricultural Road is 30 percent complete.
The ongoing work on the highway between the Alexandria Desert Road intersection and the Oasis intersection, which is 8 kilometres long, is also 30 percent complete, El-Wazir said.
He also referred to the challenges facing the speedy completion of the expansion work, including conflicts in the utility lines near the road, such as electricity, water and sewage, telecommunications, natural gas and petroleum pipelines.
“All areas of conflicting utility lines have been identified and sent to the relevant ministries, and if the modification of their courses is accomplished, the project will be completed in the shortest possible period,” El-Wazir said.
A national project for road development was launched by El-Sisi in 2014 with the goal of building and upgrading 7,000 kilometres of roads at a cost of EGP 175 billion ($10.9 billion). Almost 4,500 kilometres have been completed so far, according to figures provided by the transport ministry.
In 2019, Egypt was ranked 28th in terms of the quality of road infrastructure in the World Economic Forum's Global Competitive Report, up from 118th place in 2014. The government had attributed the improved ranking to the major road projects implemented in recent years.