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Mokhotlong to Sani Pass Road, Lesotho

Aurecon’s awards for this project displays our commitment to collaborate with all stakeholders to optimise the long-term benefits for the local community

Economic development in the south-east of the Kingdom of Lesotho has been inhibited by the poor road access to KwaZulu-Natal in neighbouring South Africa. The road to Sani Pass fulfilled an important international trade, service and tourism function but was only accessible to all-terrain vehicles. When South Africa upgraded the Sani Pass, Lesotho’s Ministry of Public Works and Transport Roads Directorate (MoPWT) commissioned the construction of a new road to replace the 46 km gravel road between Mokhotlong and the Lesotho border post at Sani Pass to bitumen standard.

Aurecon provided all the engineering services for the project including the topographical survey of the 46 km route, the preliminary and detail design of the road, the design of two bridges and 18 major culvert structures. The challenging terrain on the route of the new road varies from sensitive wetlands to mountain passes, traversing an area with elevations between 2 500 and 3 000 metres, where structures are exposed to freeze and thaw conditions. Snow delayed the start of construction and extreme weather conditions frequently interrupted the work schedule.

Meticulous innovative design and project management overcame all challenges and the project team was complimented by the client on achieving a highly successful outcome that exceeded all expectations. The high-calibre new road will stimulate tourism, as well as general economic upliftment on both sides of the border.

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