Opus was commissioned by the Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) to develop strategic transportation plans for four key roading corridors across two Fijian islands. The objective of the studies was to identify existing and future corridor issues, and develop solutions that respond to key challenges in a planned and
comprehensive manner.

The SP1 Labasa Transportation Study area covers 8km of road corridor through Labasa, a provincial town located in the northern part of Vanua Levu. The town is
the largest on the island and an important economic hub for the regional economy, in particular the growing and production of sugar cane. 

The project team collected and analysed a wide range of data on the existing corridor operations (including traffic count data, drive over videos and crash history) to identify transportation problems on the corridor. Issues were discussed and confirmed with stakeholders through workshop environments.
Key issues identified on the corridor included:

  • Traffic congestion: High traffic volumes, competing user demands and inefficient network arrangements create congestion within the town centre, particularly during peak sugar cane harvesting seasons.
  • Poor road safety: Sections of the corridor have a poor crash history, in particular, rural areas with higher traffic speeds and pedestrian crossing demands.
  • Enabling economic growth: Multiple developments are planned with traffic volumes potentially doubling to 20,000 vehicles per day.
  • Amenity and environment: Negative environmental effects of traffic growth in Labasa town, such as noise, detritus and dust.

From analysis of the current situation, we were able to set clear objectives for the road corridor, focused around reducing congestion, enabling economic growth, improving town centre amenity, improving road user safety and accessibility into Labasa town. 

The project team identified a range of transport solutions (long-list) that were then evaluated against strategic objectives for the corridor to help FRA identify which solutions best contributed to resolving corridor issues.

Solutions were compiled into quick wins, minor investment packages and major projects (such as bypass options) that provides the FRA with a planned response
to future transportation demands on the corridor over the next 20 years.

Central to the project success was the development of a clear project approach that facilitated and supported close collaboration between the FRA and project stakeholders, including local Councils, government bodies and local industry representatives.