Ecuador highway
Travel

Road Construction in Coastal Ecuador

The Pacific Coast in Ecuador is undergoing massive road construction.  All of the roads and bridges are being paved and rebuilt, or have just been completed.  One of the really awesome things that the Ecuadorian government does is posts billboards along the roads telling people how much each section costs.  Now might be a good time to direct you to a map of the coast.

Here is the sign for the road between Montecristi and Jipijapa (pronounced hippy-happa) telling us that the 46.89 Km stretch costs $32.5 million US dollars.  This road is just about complete; almost nothing left to do so it’s an easy drive.

Ecuador roads

Between Pedernales and San Vicente (just across the bridge from Bahia), 111.08 Km costs $99.5 million.  This one is underway now.  Some bridges are out, some are being prepared to be taken out, and I don’t think there were any that were complete yet in July, 2012.

Ecuador road sign

Between Santa Elena and Bahia, 278.7 Km costs $90.4 million.  There is just the one bridge left to rebuild that I told you about last post.  Otherwise, it is just about completed.

Ecuador road sign

When we drove from Bahia to Canoa, we crossed the bridge beyond this pile of dirt (click on the picture to get a better view).  This picture is taken the very next day – glad we went there when we could take the bridge 🙂

Ecuador bridge

When roads are under construction, they let you drive on whichever section they are not currently working on.  Basically, all traffic going both directions are driving in one lane making the drive most interesting and perilous.  Not to mention that rebar is sticking straight up about 2 inches in the area where a curb is going to eventually be installed.  We thought for sure we were going to get a flat tire or two but managed to make it with four intact tires.

Ecuador road construction
Ecuador road construction

Is this bridge really being held up with wood?  I would not like to be one of the workers under it.

Ecuador road construction

How do you make sure no one drives on the completed section?  Rocks of course!

Ecuador road construction

Hopefully you know which way to go at the unmarked Y’s 🙂  We took the left first, only to find a bridge out with no bypass.  The right took us to the new highway under construction.

Ecuador road construction

We were not sure if we were supposed to be driving on this road but the workers waved us on after we stopped.

Ecuador road construction
Ecuador road construction
Ecuador road construction

Even the speed bumps in towns are being moved, improved and painted.  I am so happy to see the paint because a lot of times, a speed bump was not visible until we were already going over it (at full speed).

Ecuador road construction

When complete, the roads are very nice.

Ecuador highway

We are really looking forward to living there and seeing all of the improvements full time!

Until next time,
Emily

Emily is a US Expat in Ecuador. She grew up on a Minnesota farm, worked in IT in California's Silicon Valley, then moved to a coastal Ecuador fishing village. Emily's goal is to share Ecuador with you, one snippet at a time. Topics include attractions, compassion, ecotourism, Ecuador products, everyday Ecuador, and flora and fauna. Please let Emily know what you would like to read more about!

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