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Butmir bypass towards completion

By Maj. Ladislav Ruzicka
First published in
SFOR Informer #98, October 11, 2000

Sarajevo - Since July HQ SFOR Engineer Branch has an on-going construction project known as the "long bypass road".
When SFOR started building Butmir Camp, it blocked one of the existing access roads from the Federation of Bosnia and Hercegovina (BiH) to Republika Srpska (RS). The primary objective of the new construction is to maintain freedom of movement across the Inter-Entity Boundary Line via an access road for civilian traffic with improved roadway characteristic and drainage. The length of the bypass is approximately 1,800 metres.
The project is now approaching completion as the Romanian Engineer Detachment (RED) continues the roadway improvement works. In support is the Hungarian Engineer Contingent (HEC) working on the installation of the remaining sewers and reconstruction of the two bridges. HQ SFOR Engineer Support Service is providing material orders and miscellaneous works to keep the project on line. Additionally, vital dump truck support was provided by Italian and Spanish trucks from Multinational Division South East. This support kept deliveries going when another asset was lost
All four sections of the bypass are currently under construction, with 75% of the project complete.
“The main work remaining is constructing the gabions of section 2, the most challenging section of the bypass. The section contains existing utilities, trees and a densely populated area with residential houses. In addition, the section runs parallel to the river. This will require significant storm drainage and the construction of a gabion retaining wall to improve and structurally protect the roadway when the river level rises twice a year," said acting Chief of the Infra Projects, HQ SFOR Engineer Branch, US Navy Lt. Michael Lukich.
Work also continues with the final grading and storm sewer improvement along the section 3 and 4.
The current priority is the demolition and reconstruction of two bridges, one wooden and the other concrete and metal. This work is being carried out by HEC. This work is now online following some initial delay in obtaining the necessary construction materials. Almost 40 tons of building material were eventually purchased in Croatia and delivered by the HELBA Transport unit and RED.
Lukich expects that bridge work can be completed by mid-November. However, the asphalt placement, a storm sewer, and infrastructure road improvements are on schedule and planned to be completed at the end of October.
"The liaison officers of Republika Srpska and the Federation have been an integral part of addressing concerns residents along the bypass have had as well as HQ SFOR and Divisional staff. It is their efforts and co-operation that will make this project a reality,” said Lukich.

Related link:
Nations of SFOR: Romania, Hungary
Engineers