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Mount Rosser bypass to open in August

Published:Wednesday | March 19, 2014 | 12:00 AM

Come Independence Day, August 6, motorists will be able to use the long-delayed Mount Rosser bypass, which is the first leg of the North-South Highway project under Highway 2000.

This was announced by Zhongdong Tang, China Harbour Engineering Company's regional manager for Latin America and the Caribbean, who said the project would be completed in June.

Speaking at the Jamaica Conference Centre in Kingston during the signing of the Jamaica Emergency Employment Pro-gramme component of the Major Infrastructure Development Programme, Tang also revealed that Segment Two, "from Spanish Town to Linstead, following on to Moneague to Ocho Rios, will, hopefully, be completed by February 2016".

The North-South Highway project will include a four-lane dual carriageway; toll plazas; a service area; and commercial and residential developments, including a business park, entertainment facilities, housing, and hotels.

"CHEC is also looking for other developmental opportunities, which can help push the social development in Jamaica," Tang said.

In 2012, the Government signed a deal with CHEC to construct the entire 66-kilometre highway over a three-year period at a cost of US$610 million, following much delay with the problem-plagued, stop-again-start-again Mount Rosser leg of Highway 2000.

CHEC also agreed to reimburse the Government of Jamaica US$120 million for previous expenditure on the Mount Rosser bypass road.

When complete, the highway is expected to reduce travel time between Kingston and Ocho Rios to 45 minutes.