Improved Highway Decreases Travel Time - Increases Safety
Stanley Consultants provided planning, design, and construction management services for Jamaica’s North Coast Highway.
The reconstruction of a highway in the United States usually warrants little lasting fanfare. The project may eliminate a few miles on a commute or ease congestion but beyond that has little significant impact. By contrast, the redesign and reconstruction of the North Coast Highway has forever changed the face of transportation, and the economy, in Jamaica.
The North Coast Highway connects Montego Bay to Negril on the island's west end, and to Port Antonio on the east end of the island. It is Jamaica's only arterial highway connecting major cities on the country's east and west coasts.
Originally constructed in the '60s and '70s, the highway's condition ranged from barely acceptable to unsatisfactory. This project replaced the narrow, winding and pothole ridden road with 168 miles of two-lane (24-foot wide) asphalt highway with asphalt shoulders and a drainage system to prevent flooding that previously plagued the roadway during heavy rains. Multiple new bridges along the route were constructed to withstand earthquakes. The three-segment, $220 million project took nearly a decade to complete.