Seven companies have begun rebuilding 34 streets in Sihanoukville, working round-the-clock to complete the task in eight months, with Prime Minister Hun Sen set to officiate at the ground-breaking ceremony at the end of this month.
Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall spokesman Kheang Phearum said on Monday that the work to rebuild the 34 streets, estimated at more than $200 million, started on Sunday.
“Seven firms are responsible for this eight-month project. The official ground-breaking ceremony will be held at the end of October and be presided over by Prime Minister Hun Sen,” he said.
Phearum said the government, through relevant ministries and the Preah Sihanouk provincial administration, is rebuilding flood-damaged street infrastructure.
He said the 34 streets, with a total length of more than 84km, would be rebuilt in Sihanoukville and Preah Sihanouk province’s Prey Nop district.
Ministry of Public Works and Transport secretary of state and spokesman Pal Chandara told The Post last week that the government had sufficient funds for the project, but he gave little indication that the work would start so swiftly.
“We have enough funds but we are just waiting for the right time to begin the work as we want to ensure we rebuild the streets effectively and efficiently. It won’t be delayed for too long. The streets will be rebuilt with 25cm-deep concrete and paved with 7cm of asphalt,” he said.
Phearum said last week that the work would begin next month.
“We are rebuilding the streets following the provincial master plan, with parks and pedestrian walkways. There will be some inconvenience to the public but we will try to cause as little disruption as possible. The street rebuilding will start in November,” he said.
Cambodian National Research Organisation (CNRO) director Sok Sokhom said the Preah Sihanouk provincial administration had begun work sooner than expected to make the most of the favourable weather conditions.
“Now is the right time to start the street reconstruction project because they are almost destroyed. As we know, the redevelopment project is funded by the government to completely rebuild these 34 streets.
“Therefore, the construction budget must be used transparently and the work carried out according to high-quality standards in a manner that is acceptable to both the people and the government,” he said.