June 10, 2014
On June 10, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed two grant agreements with the Government of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar to provide grant aid of up to a total of 6,729 million yen for the Project for Construction of New Thaketa Bridge and the Project for Improvement of Education College.
The projects under the grant aid agreements that were signed are described below.
1. The Project for Construction of New Thaketa Bridge (total amount of aid: 4,216 million yen)
This project will replace the Thaketa Bridge that crosses Pazundaung Creek in Yangon, increasing the traffic capacity of the bridge and alleviating congestion, which will make goods and traveler transportation more efficient on the road network connecting the eastern and southeastern parts of Yangon.
The road network in Yangon is separated at many points by the city’s waterways which are crossed by 15 bridges. The Thaketa Bridge, a two-lane road 284 meters in length and 8.5 meters wide, was constructed in 1966 and is one such bridge, providing convenient access across Pazundaung Creek on a route connecting the city center of Yangon and Thaketa and districts further east.
In 2013, the bridge handled approximately 29,000 vehicles per day, a volume resulting in chronic congestion as there is only one lane in each direction. As the traffic volume is expected to increase with further economic development in the greater Yangon metropolitan area, solving traffic congestion along with safety concerns due to deteriorating roads and ensuring safety for pedestrians with separated sidewalks are priorities.
In advance of this project, JICA provided assistance to conduct the Project for Comprehensive Urban Transport Plan of the Greater Yangon, for formulating a master plan that includes a road network, public transportation and transportation management with a goal of 2035. Construction of the new Thaketa Bridge was proposed as a priority project in the master plan to strengthen the road network of the future.
A transit point to the Thilawa Special Economic Zone, a new industrial zone in the southeast part of Yangon where development work has commenced, the Thaketa Bridge is a key junction tying together the Thaketa district, the Yangon district and Yangon International Airport, and is positioned as a major roadway for the future.
This project will increase the traffic capacity of the Thaketa Bridge and safety access for pedestrians, shortening the travel time for goods and travelers, which is expected to both reduce transportation costs and improve the living environment of local residents. In addition, the smoother flow of people and goods over this bridge is expected to contribute to the economic development of the Yangon metropolitan area and Myanmar overall.
The current Thaketa Bridge (left), and as designed (right).
Basic project information
2. The Project for Improvement of Education College (total amount of aid 2,513 million yen)
This project aims to train more primary and middle school teachers in better conditions by expanding and improving the facilities and equipment at Taungoo Education College which have become dilapidated. The college is located in Taungoo, a city in Bago Region about 90 minutes away by car south of the capital of Nay Pyi Taw.
Since 2011, Myanmar has been working on education reform by making mandatory education free, improving the school environment and capacity of teachers, and improving the working conditions for teachers, so as to bring educational level of Myanmar up to international standards. Those efforts include plans to increase the number of primary and lower secondary schools as well as the number of teachers, but the conditions of the Taungoo Education College have grown markedly dilapidated, making improvements to the facilities and equipment a priority.
This project will increase the number of students accepted at the Taungoo Education College by about 3.8 times from 395 in 2011 to 1,500 in 2019, raising the total number of teachers trained from the current 8,500 each year to 11,000 at the 21 national education colleges. Since May, JICA has also been implementing the Project for Curriculum Reform at Primary Level of Basic Education, a technical cooperation project that provides inclusive assistance for education reform in Myanmar by developing primary school textbooks, improving the teacher training course at education colleges (including Taungoo) and providing training for improving teacher quality.
Basic project information
The completed campus as designed.