A Bailey bridge access for Loto Samasoni crossing

The crossing at the Loto Samasoni where a Bailey bridge will be built for easy access and distribution of traffic

By Faye Seiuli

APIA, SAMOA – FRIDAY 15 MARCH 2019: What used to be a popular swimming hole at Loto Samasoni, opposite Malifa will soon have a Bailey Bridge crossing for easy access.

Named after Samson’s strength as in the Bible story, the Loto Samasoni swimming hole however deteriorated over time especially when the water was diverted for the hydropower generation in the 1980’s.

The Bailey bridge will be one of 5 modular portable and pre-fabricated truss bridges handed over to the Samoan Government by the Australia Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

The project broke ground yesterday morning at the Loto Samasoni as part of the Samoan and Australian Governments collaborative efforts to fulfil the key Outcome 10 of the Samoa Development Strategy to provide “A sustainable, safe, secure and environmentally responsible transport network that supports Samoa’s economic and social development.”

When completed, the Loto Samasoni Bailey bridge will provide another access across the Vaisigano River in addition to the Vaisigano Bridge, Leone Bridge and Lelata Bridge.

These 4 bridges or crossings are vital in providing connectivity to the Matautu port, commercial businesses within the Central Business District, the Vaitele industrial zone, the Malifa school compound, the National Hospital as well as residential properties.

The Loto Samasoni crossing will assist improve the distribution of traffic along the main roads.

The Leone bridge also funded by the Australian Government not far from the Loto Samasoni crossing

Loto Samasoni’s new road and crossing was designed by the Ministry of Works, Transportation & Infrastructure and the Land Transport Authority.

Australia’s visiting Assistant Minister for International Development & the Pacific; Senator Ruston said she understood the importance of the current infrastructure because of the well-known feature of natural disasters and particularly cyclones.

“Australia is absolutely committed to supporting Samoa to strengthen resilient civilian infrastructure,” said Senator Ruston.

“Today is another example of the collaboration and what collaboration can deliver when we all work together. Australia is very proud of our relationship and friendship with Samoa,” she said.

The Australia Government is funding the installation and construction of the Bailey bridge at AUD$950,000 each.