As part of efforts to reduce traffic congestion and improve aesthetics of Ilorin metropolis, the Kwara State Government has commenced construction of Split diamond interchange (Underpass) at Geri Alimi with the demolition of structures yesterday. It would be recalled that the Executive Governor of the state, Dr. Abdulfatah Ahmed flagged off the N3.7 billion underpass project in September, last year. The project was also awarded to Duravil Engineering Ltd while BAL Engineering serves as the consulting firm. On-the-spot assessment by this medium showed that the contractor is already clearing properties believed to be on the 'right of way' of the project in preparation for 24 hours work on the road, next week. Bulldozers and catapillers were seen pulling down the old roundabout structure while a lorry was packing the sand and rubbles away. Speaking with the Managing Director of Duravil Engineering, Ahmad Abass, he said, "You can see, we have started work. I came here around 5am and we are still here, work is going on fine. He however declined further comment on the expected date of completion of the project. In a telephone chat on the development, the Commissioner for Works and Transport, Alhaji Aro Yahaya said, "We are appealing to all Kwarans and the general road users to cooperate with the contractor while the underpass project last. "By the grace of God, all the property owners will receive their compensation before the end of this week. "We have already deployed security agencies to manage the traffic but road users should know that there is no place in the world that road construction doesnít distract traffic therefore, we should exercise patience. "We are assuring Kwarans that the diamond split interchange when completed will bring succour in that axis by reducing traffic gridlock with 24 hours security surveillance daily," he divulged. The Commissioner stressed that aside the fact that it will beautify the metropolis; it will also create job opportunities and generate revenue for the state. "Our people should cooperate with the government on this renovation in the state as it will be beneficial to them." Yahaya equally noted that the state government is mindful of the alternative routes as work is still ongoing and most of them are near completion. He submitted that with the commencement of the underpass project, the contractor has assured that work will be done at the site 24 hours daily from next week. He said, "The contractor gave us one year to complete the underpass but with the speed, it's possible that they can complete the project in eight months."