BY AGATHA MUHAISE
Uganda Christian University (UCU) is expected to begin the construction of roads at its Main Campus, Mukono, in March 2017. The tendering process is already underway and the bids are to be opened on February 15.
The upgrade of the roads in the university to tarmac was necessitated by the inconvenience of the mud in the rainy season and the dust in the dry season. When the idea was proposed, the Faculty of Science and Technology drew the roadwork designs while the Department of Facilities and Capital Projects designed the tender documents for interested companies to apply. The evaluation of bids will begin shortly.
“The bills of quantities and tender documents have been designed, the road works designs have been drawn and prospective bidders identified. On 15th this month we want to open the bidding and assess the bidders,” Mr David Mugawe, the Acting Deputy vice chancellor Finance and Administration, said.
All the roads on campus, paths, drainages, parking lots at the Administration Block, Words of Hope, the New Sports Complex, the Kivengere Block, and the Bishop Tucker Building are going to be upgraded.
David Kivumbi, the Projects and Maintenance engineer, told The Standard during an interview: “The documents we have involve construction of about three kilometres of roads, parking spaces, paths, drainage channels, street lights, provisions for pipes in the roads, and humps. They also have a provision for preservation since the university is set up on the old Theological College and the extension of new buildings.”
“For example, for Agape Road, we are going to use pavers because we are not widening it and pavers rhyme better with the old buildings,” he explained.
The announcement to upgrade the roads in the university was made early last year. Mr Mugawe attributed the delay in the process to the procedures and technicalities that had to be done before the construction began.
“What people don’t know is that before the actual construction, a team of engineers have to first test the strength of the base. They took a sample to the lab and examined how many layers would be suitable for the ground. And then the Faculty of Science and Technology had to draw designs for the roads before we could take the idea off the drawing board,” Mugawe said.
The estimated budget of the project is still unknown since the bids have not been opened. But the provision of the funding of the project has already been included in the development fees on the tuition of all students.
Mugawe also made it clear that the construction is going to be done in phases. He said this is because it will rely on the budget of a particular semester. However they have already settled on priority areas to start with.
“The areas we will deal with first will be the roads around the library. These include Sanyu Road, Suubi Road, Library Rise and Alpha Road. This is because we want to protect the books from the dust,” Mugawe clarified.
Eng Kivumbi guaranteed that they will take all necessary measures to ensure that the construction will not affect the normal running to the university.
“We may choose to phase the roads construction, or decide to work on one side for the roads that have no alternative path, or better yet work on less concentrated days like weekends. But we cannot work out all the nitty-gritty before we find the best evaluated bidder for the job,” he said.
UCU was voted by christianuniversitiesonline.org as the most beautiful Christian university in Africa and the 50th in the world. With this upgrade the university administration is set to create a more beautiful campus and a comfortable environment for its students.