17 August, 2011
Agreement signed to build Route 55 extension.
High ranking Montes del Plata and Ministry of Transportation and Public Works (MTOP) officials signed an agreement on Friday to define conditions for an extension to Route 55.
The extension will start at the merger with Route 21 and reach the entrance of the Punta Pereira Free Zone.
The extension of the national route entails building approximately 12 km of roadways designed to withstand heavy traffic to and Punta Pereira as well as an exit at the Route 21 intersection to avoid affecting traffic on this widely used tourist road.
The new pulp mill access road has been designed to completely circumvent all contact between heavy traffic and the area`s towns (Radial Hernández, Pueblo Gil, Conchillas, Puerto Inglés) thus contributing to significantly reduce the additional traffic`s impact on urban infrastructure and people`s safety.
The project was subject to a bid organized by Montes del Plata, where a group of leading Uruguayan companies were granted the contract.
COLIER is the main road construction contractor, CIEMSA will be in charge of the Route 21 exit bridge and CABLEX will be setting up the lighting at the merger area.
The project`s engineering will be headed by Ing. Ariel Nieto y Asociados while the CSI and EIA consulting firms will be carrying out the necessary environmental studies. The bridge was designed by Vicente Agrelo.
Concrete paving was ed as the best available technology in the country as has been proven by the recent construction of the Montevideo perimeter ring. The new highway will have two 3.65 meter lanes with a 2.5 meter shoulder on each side.
Montes del Plata will be responsible for the executive project`s development, land subdivision map of the lots entailed by the road, compensation and construction execution and management.
The construction of the highway will begin in July and is estimated to take a maximum of 12 months. Once it is completed the Ministry of Transportation will take possession and ownership of the highway.
The Ministry must also approve the project and supervise construction through the National Highway Bureau.
Pulp mill construction and operation will lead to an increase of heavy traffic in the area, and this access road represents one of the necessary measures taken by Montes del Plata to reduce any negative impacts on the neighboring population.
Furthermore, the use of a bi-modal means of wood transportation was established, thus intensifying river transport as much as possible. This also helps to decrease the impact on roads by reducing the flow of heavy traffic. In addition to these measures, Montes del Plata will deploy road awareness, information and education activities at nearby towns, to promote increased safety conditions for everyone.