The Bakwena N1N4 has successfully provided infrastructure and a service to road users for almost 12 years. The N1N4toll road consists of 90km on the N1 between Pretoria north and Bela Bela and 290km of the N4 west of Pretoria to the Botswana border
Right from the beginning Bakwena offered various methods of payment to the road users such as cash, credit card, petrol/garage cards as well as electronic payment via an e-tag.
The freeways in our country like everywhere else in the world are intended to connect towns with each other as well as cities, provinces and different countries. The freeways are predominantly to serve long distance traffic. SANRAL, an Agency of the National Government, is taking care of the National Road network – comprising 18000 kilometres of roads.
The development of the total road network of 750 000 kilometres is the responsibility of all three spheres of government, namely National, Provincial and Municipal. Local road infrastructure is often inadequate thereby encouraging road users to revert to freeways within the municipal area to commute. When this happens the mobility of long distance traffic is impeded on, particularly during peak traffic. In certain countries the toll tariff increases when the traffic increases and vice versa. Bakwena on the other hand keeps the tariff the same and tries to accommodate the peaks by widening the road infrastructure. Bakwena has to maintain a specified level of service during the concession period.
Bakwena has no means for managing queries from commuters regarding the lack of viable alternatives. This includes road/streets and other modes of transport. This should be a matter for the relevant authority to manage.
Bakwena is carrying out construction, rehabilitation and maintenance along the N1 and N4 in order to provide and maintain a freeway which meets certain specified engineering standards. Our investment in the N1 upgrade from Proefplaas to Zambezi is approximately R274 million and upgrade on the N1 from Hammanskraal to Maubane is approximately R225 million.
The addition of a fourth lane for both the northbound and southbound carriageways between the Proefplaas and Zambezi interchanges was started in September 2011 and is on schedule to be completed in December 2012 with the rehabilitation of the existing three lanes to be completed by March 2013. The Proefplaas interchange where the N1 crosses the N4 into Pretoria is also being upgraded in order to increase traffic capacity to and from the N1.
Concrete slab rehabilitation is also currently being undertaking in the far left lanes at the Stormvoel and Zambezi extra wide lanes. This project was started in August 2012 and is estimated to be completed in May 2013. Construction will be managed to ensure that disruption to the traffic at these interchanges is minimal. Extra wide (abnormal) vehicle loads will be required to use an alternative route. There is a system in place dealing with this.
Bakwena has provided a 24 hour towing facility in order to have quicker removal of vehicles that break down or are in accidents along the sections that we are currently working on. The construction work is done under very difficult conditions and we appeal to the road users to drive sensibly and keep to the speed limit.
A 24 month rehabilitation contract was started on the N1 from Hammanskraal to Maubane in August 2012 and will be completed in 2014. Various road markings and routine maintenance are also being carried out on this section at the same time.
We have a 24 hour Customer Care Centre (0800 BAKWENA / 0800 2259362) for incidents to be reported to as well as provide route patrols 24/7 which assist at incident scenes, assists vehicles which have broken down. Please phone the Call Centre should you notice congestion on the road or an accident, this will assist us to inform other road users through the media. Please identify your position by means of the blue board markers which are positioned at 200 metre intervals on the freeway. The Patrol Drivers ensure that the N1N4 is clear of any debris and material that could cause accidents.
Bakwena strives to improve the lives of those residing in communities along our route. For more information on our CSI initiatives, please log onto our website, www.bakwena.co.za.
We would like to thank the authorities which are assisting us with the accommodation of our traffic as well as our road users for their co-operation and patience while we undertake these works.