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Water, electricity, sewage, public lighting, telecom deviation is underway in six corridors in the city. “The deviation works in the boulevard Mekka and the first part of the boulevard Okba-Bnou-Nafi (2 km each), which began last September have been completed, they have started on the boulevards Ba-Hmad, Panoramic, Abdelmoumen and Okba “ Mr. said Youssef Draiss, CEO of Casa Transport S.A., the Tramway General Contractor.
Some people wonder why they entire area was not closed to allow for the work to go faster, but the CEO of Casa transport said that studies have previously shown that the best way to minimize traffic disruption is to work on alternate stretches of 200 or 300 meters on each side of the road.
By mid-January, it is expected that work will reaches Mohammed V Boulevard in the city Center starting from the train station Casa Voyageurs. The approach is to start work from the suburbs and converge toward the center, and as such, Boulevard Hassan II was the last to be affected for reasons of traffic flows management.
Casa Transport has opted for local outreach by distributing pamphlets to residents of affected neighborhoods. Thus, for this first wave, 7000 mailings were distributed in the Boulevard Abdelmoumen and 5,000 were distributed to residents near in Ba-Hmad Boulevard.
The entire work of signaling, deviation of various networks has been subcontracted to specialized companies. The traffic, which is already difficult in major arteries including those in the city center, will become more congested as works progresses. The end of 2010 should alleviate this problem, according to Mr. Youssef Draiss.
A study to improve car traffic management and traffic lights network has been entrusted to a specialized company, which is developing an automated system to manage traffic. In other words, what the police are currently doing by communicating by radio will be made automatically at the end of the project.
Example: the main boulevards will be powered by what are called "sensors" the kind of sensors that can inform the unit about the number of vehicles engaged in an axis at a given time. It is thus possible to adjust, as needed, the waiting time at red lights.
For the same purpose, a web site will be available in mid-January where users can find all information related to this project, particularly in the area where they live. According to the schedule, the first phase of work should be completed by the end of 2010, but the infrastructure (track laying, etc..) have already started three months ago on the first corridors that are ready.
Furthermore, the tramway car contract delivery contract has just been awarded to French Company Alstom, a world leader in the field, for $ 2.7 billion DH, or 37 tramway cars with the first ones to be delivered in November 2011. This contract also includes hardware maintenance for 15 years.
Finally, the first tramway line in Casablanca, 30 km long and running from Blvd Sidi-Moumen to reach the Hay-Hassani district, will be operational in December 2012.
Article was first published in French at La Vie Economique