Road upgrade to resolve traffic, flooding issues

Residents of Jalan Ulu Sungai Merah in Sibu, Sarawak, have been told to be patient as works to resolve traffic congestion there will take two years to complete.

State Public Health, Housing and Local Government Minister Deputy Minister Datuk Michael Tiang said works would start in March, according to Drainage and Irrigation Department (DID).

“I urge residents to bear with us as we not only want to resolve flooding but also traffic congestion.”

The project, which also involves raising the road, would cost over RM40mil, he said after attending a prize-giving ceremony for School Recycling Campaign 2023.

“Traffic congestion is expected to worsen during the construction period,” said Tiang, who is also Pelawan assemblyman.

“I hope that two years down the road, the issue will be resolved once and for all.”

As a temporary measure, Sibu Municipal Council will raise the 2km road with gravel while DID will dig a drain to let the water flow out.

“Heavy rain, especially in front of SMK Ulu Sungai Merah, caused the drain culvert to collapse, leading to flooding,” he said.

As there was no alternate road, the 8,000 residents from over 3,000 households were badly affected.

“The road is the only way for people to go to work and to send their children to school.

“They were caught in a serious traffic jam for about three to four hours,” Tiang said.

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