China State Construction Engineering Corporation (CSCEC) shouldered a rural road renovation project in Vavuniya District, Sri Lanka, in March 2020, helping improve local traffic conditions.
Due to historic issues, the northern areas of Sri Lanka have relatively slow economic development compared to other regions and most linkages between villages are still dirt roads. In order to improve travel for local people, the government launched a road renovation and upgrading program.
According to the local government's plan, the road renovation project in Vavuniya included flattening the original road and widening and consolidating it with asphalt.
Liu Cunfeng, project manager of CSCEC, said that Vavuniya has a total population of 200,000 and the company was responsible for renovation of 100 kilometers of road stretching through several villages.
Guaranteeing engineering while making no impact on villagers' normal travel was a highlight during construction.
Liu said that the entire construction was smooth thanks to local villagers' affirmation and support.
An aerial view of the construction site of the rural road renovation project in Vavuniya District, Sri Lanka, on June 12, 2021 [Photo/sasac.gov.cn]
As the project progresses local people benefit.
A grocer whose store sits on the road side said that he can now welcome more clients than before as the road in front of his shop has been renovated.
The renovated road also makes it easier for students to reach school.
Students ride home on the renovated road in Vavuniya District, Sri Lanka, on March 11. [Photo by Tang Lu/Xinhua]
In addition to the improvements in traveling, the project also contributed to local employment.
Liu explained that women were also encouraged to work at the project and the company specially set up 30 percent of positions for local women.
A female employee responsible for road cleaning at the project said that there was no income in her family previously, making it quite difficult to raise her children. Thanks to her job at the project, she can afford to build a new bathroom and put electricity into her house.
Another woman added that in addition to receiving a salary she can also commute every day to work by shuttles arranged by the company. "It's quite an enviable job," she said.
(Executive editor: Ma Zheming)