Construction work continues for the new 10.5km coastal road project for Réunion Island. The project is for the new Route du Littoral coastal road around the island, replacing the existing road and 8km of the link is now open for use.
Part of the new link runs along a 5.6km viaduct constructed specially for the task and which raises the road sufficiently so that it will not be blocked during stormy weather. The other section is on a 6.9km raised embankment. The new route is required as the existing coastal road has suffered frequent blockages from landslides and is also vulnerable to stormy weather, while there have been concerns over its safety for road users.
The work has yet to commence however for last 2.5km stretch of the coastal road, with the project having prone to several delays so far. Financing worth €420 million is being provided to complete the project by the French Government. So far the French Government has provided most of the funding necessary for the work, which is now costing considerably more than originally envisaged.
The complexity of the project has added to the delays, while issues with material supplies have also added to the time needed and cost of the work. The last estimates on how much the project would cost were US%2.44 billion, something of an increase over the $1.5 billion expected when work started 10 years ago.