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FEATURE STORY

Urban Transport Project Creates Scores of Jobs in Kabul

June 16, 2015

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Formerly unemployyed surveyor Sameeer Waziri along with construction workers upgrade the road through through improving the median and drainage systems.

Rumi Consultancy/World Bank

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Some 200 jobs have been created by a road reconstruction project that connects Deh Bori to Darulaman road in Kabul that will see wide, well-lit roads, sidewalks, and covered sewers on completion in September 2015.
  • The Kabul Urban Transport Efficiency Improvement Project (KUTEI), implemented by Kabul Municipality, is undertaking this project to build roads to international standards and improve traffic circulation.
  • The Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund’s support to KUTEI targets improvement of transport services through a package of interrelated interventions to build Kabul Municipality’s capacity.

KABUL CITY, Kabul Province – Sameer Waziri, 43, is pleased to be among the some 200 people recruited for a road reconstruction project in western Kabul. In spite of having been engaged in road construction for more than a decade in eastern Paktia Province, he was jobless upon returning to Kabul until being recruited for this project.

“I have a wife and 11 children. We were spending from our savings when I did not have a job. I had to go through economic hardship for a period of time,” says Sameer. “However, now I am paid $350 per month in this project.” According to Sameer, his subordinates are paid 350 AFN (just over $6) a day plus two meals.

Sameer underscores the role of such projects in creating employment opportunities: “In the absence of such projects, lots of people will remain jobless, which would take its toll on the overall unemployment rate.”

The project in which Sameer works as a supervisor is part of the Kabul Urban Transport Efficiency Improvement (KUTEI) Project. KUTEI is implemented by Kabul Municipality and supported by the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF). The ARTF’s $90.5 million grant to KUTEI targets improvement of transport services through a package of interrelated interventions to build Kabul Municipality’s capacity.


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New medians under construction at Pul-e-Sorkh will improve safety and allow traffic to flow more smoothly.

Rumi Consultancy/World Bank

" “Many public offices, hospitals, ministries, the parliament, and a lot more institutions are located along this road, but when the roads are wide and standards are met, people will make it to their destinations on time without being stuck in traffic for hours.” "

Ahmad Samim

Traffic Police for the Pol-e-Sorkh intersection

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Near the Habibia High School, a worker seals blocks for a smoother finish. 

Rumi Consultancy/World Bank

The road reconstruction project began in April 2014 and should be completed by September 2015, according Muhammad Zakeria, 45, a KUTEI staff member assigned to the project. “The operation of the project was temporarily put on hold due to the cold winter; however, we resumed in March and have been working hard ever since,” he says.  

A total of 3.3 kilometers of road that connects Deh Bori to Darulaman road will be asphalted within the timeframe. “The length of the first, second, and third roads are 1,400 meters, 906 meters and 1,000 meters respectively. Additionally, the width of the first road is 15 meters, the second road 21meters and the third road 14 meters,” explains Muhammad Zakeria. The sidewalks also vary in width from 1.5 meters to 6 meters.

Roads meet international standards

With the implementation of this road reconstruction project in western Kabul, the capital city will have three more roads built to international standards, bringing the total number of standard roads to five. Prior to this, KUTEI built the fourth Macrorayan road and the Kabul Nendari road to the same standards. “These roads have a mid-road lighting system, lighting poles, traffic lines and signs, covered sewers capable of bearing vehicle weight, and, most importantly, the width is determined by the current traffic demand in mind,” says Ahmad Samim, a traffic police officer stationed at Pol-e-Sorkh intersection.

“Upon completion of this project, the traffic related issues of this part of the city will be resolved. Look at the heavy traffic today despite being a Friday. Many public offices, hospitals, ministries, the parliament, and a lot more institutions are located along this road, but when the roads are wide and standards are met, people will make it to their destinations on time without being stuck in traffic for hours,” he adds.


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