The Johannesburg Roads Agency has officially launched its newly built asphalt plant in the south of Johannesburg.

Built in 1965 with the aim of supplying asphalt for the City’s internal roads maintenance programme, the plant was long overdue for an upgrade.

The JRA says the new plant will help the agency make substantial inroads in speeding up the process of converting gravel roads to surfaced roads as well as allow the agency to respond to the City’s infrastructure need timeously.

The newly built plant boasts increased capacity, producing hot mix asphalt from an average 80 tons per hour to 200 tons per hour. It is also equipped to produce cold, warm and hot mix asphalt which will increase the JRA’s ability to respond promptly to asphalt service deficits.

Acting Managing Director for the JRA, Goodwill Mbatha notes that the new plant will produce asphalt quicker and in a safe manner.

“This will speed up service delivery and most importantly, its use of Nomex filers in the baghouse will rectify and eliminate environmental pollution that was persistent with the old asphalt plant.”

The plant will increase its use of green energy through a dual burner that can use burner fuel and natural gas.

“ This investment has not only allowed us to respond to unemployment by increasing the team numbers at the depot but also with this upgrade, we hope to continue to improve on all our service delivery activities requiring asphalt,” concludes MMC for Roads and Transport, Nonhlanhla Makhuba.