Saturday, 13 July 2013

S2 update

Work on building the S2 Southern Warsaw Bypass (Południowa Obwodnica Warszawyofficially started on 16 September 2009, while preparatory ground-clearing work began early in 2009. The original aim was to have the S2 connecting the A2 motorway (from Berlin) connected up to ul. Puławska by June 2012, in time for the UEFA 2012 football championships. This slipped to August 2012, then to the end of March 2013...

Now a faint memory, the football's come and gone, while the S2 is still a building site, 13 months on. The currently quoted official date for connecting motorway to Puławska is 'this autumn', which means any time up to 20 December. So a mere 18 months of lateness.

In the meanwhile, I had the chance last week to gaze on the Cosmopolitan building (ul. Twarda 2/4) from the 28th floor (of 32) of the Warsaw Financial Center on ul. Emilii Plater, and admire the speed with which this 160m-high tower is nearing completion.

Yesterday evening, the south-bound lanes of Puławska were being closed. The road is being narrowed. This morning two of the three were re-opened, running to the east of the central pillars of the S2's viaduct flying over Puławska. The north-bound carriageway has also been narrowed from three lanes to two. I predict total traffic chaos on Monday morning's rush hour (and evening too). While traffic is noticeably lighter because of the holidays, it's nothing like the two-thirds reduction needed to make this function normally.

The narrowing of Puławska from six lanes to four over the duration of the roadworks has been a nagging nightmare for people living south of here from the past few years. Praise to the builders for having been able to keep all six lanes open for so long. But the work of connecting the S2 to Puławska via four slip-roads means that road-users (and that includes bus passengers and even cyclists) will now face major inconvenience and delay.

How long will this go on for? Can the builders working for Austrian contractor Porr (which took over Teerag-Asdag - the Austrian firm that initially won the contract to build the S2) finish this junction and restore six-lane working by 1 September? And what are the chances of the whole project (including the S79 from Węzeł Lotnisko up to Sasanki) being ready this year?

In the meanwhile, yesterday's Gazeta Stołeczna disclosed that the section of the S2 from the A2 junction at Konotopa and Al. Krakowska is very nearly ready. Not this weekend - maybe next... If so, this will make the road journey from Jeziorki to Łódź much, much more convenient for us. Cutting across along ul. Baletowa via Dawidy and Raszyn to Krakowska, northbound towards town for a short while, then wszmyk! and we're on the S2.

This should be doable by the time Moni returns to Łódź for the autumn term and the start of her third year at film school.

This time last year:
Progress on S2 bypass - photos from the air

This time three years ago:
Up Śnieżnica

This time six years ago:
July continues glum (2007 - a rainy summer)


student SGH said...


the TVN Warszawa article you link clearly states in its heading the road will be narrowed for a fortnight. The other story is whether the builders meet the deadline.

I'll let you know whether the "nagging nightmare" is as dreadful as you fear. If so, I have alternative routes anyway.

Michael Dembinski said...

@ student

I'll believe it when I see it. My guess is that this fortnight will over-run to three/four weeks. Then traffic will be re-organised and the four lanes will run under the western span of the viaduct. In short, I'd put my money on six lanes by September.

Marcin said...

Gentlemen. With all of that mess, the so called Południowa Obwodnica Warszawy, it reminds me some toughness, “benedictine”, long-lasting works while a swimming pool at my former primary school was constructed during more than decade. A story is, that at the edge of 1978 and ’79, as I only transferred to the newly-opened primary school (No. 301) at the Varsovian Jelonki, me and my peers have heard about projects of a construction of a closed-to school building swimming pool (nearby a gym hall). And some of works were begun at the end of the 70.s All the time, during my attendance at that school, at each of opening of a school year, me and my peers have heard from the school authorities, as for not long and just that pool has to be opened and as how me and my peers would be able to swim there. Meanwhile, the Solidarity Movement has appeared, then the Martial Law, and then the Jaruzelski’s dark decade. Works were proceed, proceed, proceed with no hurry… At the mid of 80.s me and my peers had time to finish our primary education and just simply graduate. But through all of that time we have heard solid authorities’ assurances about some of opportunities for us to swim at that pool. And, as I only remember properly that pool was opened at a second half of the 80.s, as just only for… its “technical” closing. I do remember, as how a massive and loud propaganda it accompanied with. You know, a representative orchestra, some of picnics, press and television coverage, officials empty talks, and all of that celebration. And as only ribbon has being cut and all of us were happy to have the pool opened, then on the next day there was announced that the pool is to be closed due to some of the technical works, fixings and so on. Laughingly, at the back of the pool, during that celebration, it was possible to hear and see as how technicians and workmen were still working inside as if nothing happened then, not bothering with an opening ceremony. As I only remember properly, that pool was opened for good at the beginning of the 90.s. And I’m almost sure about this if not mistaken. More then less two decades of the dreams coming true. This is why I’m rather skeptic about the POW’s constructing progress. When, it has to be closed due to some of the “technical” (whether “technological”) works? Sorry for some of lexical and grammar mistakes, as I’ve not used English for a long time.

student SGH said...

With hindsight and for the record - six lanes opened on 3 August.

In terms of linguistic purity - you wrote "by September" which, as Jacek Koba wrote in his book, means before a specific date - so still before deadline...

So would you have lost your money, or not? ;-)