For anyone that regularly drives in and out of Kampala using Jinja road you will agree with me that the Lugogo Bypass – Jinja road T Junction at the Stadium is one of the worst danger spots. First, cars from the Bypass are allowed to enter Jinja Road and cross to the lane heading to the city while cars in the lane heading to the city are allowed to cross the lane heading out of the city and access the Bypass.
There are lots of stories of people that have had accidents and some even died as a result of crossing along that section of the road. A few days back, while at the parking yard of the Game shopping complex at Lugogo, I was jolted when I heard the sound of a trailer attempting to brake while hooting simultaneously. It was sloping down from the city heading to Nakawa just by the Lugogo stadium when this lady in a Mercedes Benz decided to cross from the Lugogo Bypass junction to access the opposite side of Jinja road that leads to the city.
Apparently the intensity of the situation must have been to much for hero, she froze at the steering wheel, somehow the trailer driver fought with his car and on realizing he was going to knock the Mercedes, he instead opted to climb the centre island in the road. All I could hear for a moment was the negotiation between metal and stone as the trailer driver attempted to stabilize his car and avoid knocking other cars in the opposite lanes. Eventually the trailer ground to a halt in the middle of the opposite lanes and this lady fearful as she might have been gathered the courage to drive the car across and park on the sides.
Every eye witness exclaimed one thing; “Ggend’olye enokoko yo” meaning “Go eat your chicken” a term used to congratulate one for surviving something terrible or challenging.
Hen the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) mooted the idea of upgrading the Jinja Road section from Kitgum House to Nakawa, I welcomed the idea but I got disappointed when this junction wasn’t redesigned. I don’t want to believe that our engineers at the authority are incompetent because I know they have all sorts of papers and experience. However to have overlooked this section and gone ahead to spend money only on resurfacing the road is abit of a shortchange to the diligent tax payer.
I want therefore to use Social media to give my unprofessional solution to this problem that is clearly not about to be acted upon until an honourable loses their life along that section of Jinja road. In the diagrams below I show the current and proposed states and I hope that someone can borrow a leaf from what I have tried to theorize.
Currently cars merely cross cross the highway and with the absence of traffic lights, judgement is the preserve of the drivers. Lots of blood is being shed as a result.
In the proposed solution as you can see, the cars entering Jinja Road from the Bypass do not cross directly but instead branch off and face Nakawa in a secluded lane and when they gain momentum, they join the main highway. In the middle lane, the gap that was created to allow cars to cross and access the Lugogo Bypass should be blocked. Cars coming from the city that want to branch off to the Bypass will have a special secluded lane that allows them to slow down peacefully and turn into the Bypass without fear.
With these basic modifications, I believe that we shall make this junction a safer spot for the driver.