Casablanca–Rabat expressway

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A3 motorway
Route information
Length: 62 km (39 mi)
Existed: 1975 – present
History: Construction paused for 7 years in 1980s; Completed in 1991
Major junctions
North end: Rabat Ringroad[1]
  A1, A2, A7
South end: Casablanca
Highway system
Roads of Morocco
A3 Rabat.jpg

The Casablanca–Rabat expressway, designated A3, was the first expressway to be built in Morocco, with construction starting in the 1970s. It was only completed in 1986 after a 7 year halt.

It was originally free of charge, but a toll station was erected at Bouznika in 1993 as part of a new strategy in Moroccan expressway construction. Traffic between Casablanca and Mohammedia west, as well as from Rabat to Aïn Atiq travel free of charge.

In December 2012 the operator of the road, ADM widened the road to 2 X 3 lanes.[2] Work was started in 2009. Estimated costs for this 58 km long project are 800 Million Dirham. Main reason for expansion is the expected traffic growth, which is calculated at 55-79% between 2010 and 2020, depending on the stretch of road[3][4]
Toll revenues for the Casablanca–Rabat expressway are the highest in the country, generating 306 million dirhams in 2007 (252 million in 2006), nearly a third of all toll-revenues in Morocco.[5]

The route starts at the Aïn Harrouda interchange, and then joins the A5 Casablanca bypass at the junction just before the west Mohammedia interchange. It continues past the east interchange serving Mohammedia before reaching the toll station at Bouznika. After passing Skhirat and Aïn Atiq the road reaches Temara on the outskirts of Rabat. Traffic going to Fes and Tangier then exit at Hay Riad to converge onto the non-expressway Rabat bypass. The motorway regulations end just before the entrance to the city at the Prince Moulay Abdellah sports complex.

In 2013 the Rabat Ringroad will be completed and then the road will start/end at this junction.

Originally the motorway regulations also applied to the section west of Aïn Harrouda, through the Casablanca metropolitan area as far as Hay Hassani. These were removed in 1995 an 80 km/h speed limit was imposed on this section.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Note: Connection to the Rabat Ringroad will be completed in 2012
  2. ^ Les travaux d’élargissement à 3 voies de l’autoroute Casablanca – Rabat sont achevé conformément au planning prévu (French)
  3. ^ Details from ADM Project page, visited 1 August 2008
  4. ^ Updated projectpage Widening A3 to 2x3 lanes, (French), visited 17 March 2012
  5. ^ Main financial figures of ADM website, visited 22 August 2008