PNG BRIDGE PROJECT ATTRACTS VILLAGERS

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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (The National, Dec, 28) - Work on the rehabilitation of five bridges along the Highlands Highway in Papupa New Guinea’s Eastern Highlands Province is proving to be an attraction for villagers.

The attraction is mainly in the use of heavy equipment at the sites of Orompaka, Nonompinka, Honerangka, Ofiga and Umbaka bridges on the highway between Kainantu and Goroka.

Travelers and nearby villagers alike were marveling at Fujita Corporation of Japan’s use of huge cranes and excavators to widen the five single lane bridges into two-lane bridges.

Travelers on PMV buses going home to the Highlands for the festive season were particularly impressed at the engineering feat of the Japanese and their use of plant and equipment not usually seen on the highway.

Another Japanese company engaged as consultant in the project is Nippon Koe.

According the reports from the Department of Works, the Japanese company Fujita Corporation was contracted after winning a tender bid in which it would be widening five one-lane bridges to two-lane at a cost PGK10 million (US$3.4 million).

The project is funded by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency and is expected to be completed next March.

The project is part of a grant aid by the people of Japan as a token of friendship and cooperation between Japan and PNG.

A Works official in Port Moresby said the second phase of the bridge project would commence later in the New Year and would involve seven bridges also along the Eastern Highlands section of the Highlands Highway.

December 29, 2005

The National: www.thenational.com.pg/

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