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Govt approves 1,000-km expressway developments

Bids open for setting up stop-over facilities.

Full scale facilities for highway stopovers planned for travellers comfort.

The Government has approved a plan for constructing 1,000 kilometers of Expressways under NHDP Phase-VI and bids are being called for stop-over facilities along the highways.

These include sections of high density corridors of Vadodara-Mumbai (400 km), Delhi-Meerut (66 km), Bangalore-Chennai (334 km), Delhi –Jaipur (261Km ), Delhi-Chandigarh (249 Km), Kolkata-Dhanbad (227 Km) and Delhi-Agra (200 km).

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has also given ‘in-principle’ approval to carry out feasibility study for development of Expressways of other corridors — Delhi-Ludhiana -Amritsar-Katra Expressway (Delhi-Chandigarh Expressway modified as Delhi-Ludhiana -Amritsar-Katra Expressway), Hyderabad-Vijayawada- Amravathi Expressway, Nagpur-Hyderabad-Bangalore Expressway, Kanpur- Lucknow Expressway and Ring road- Expressway at Amravathi.

In addition, the Government has approved Eastern Peripheral Expressway (135 km) outside Delhi, Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways and Shipping Pon. Radhakrishnan has told Lok Sabha.

Presently, the works for Delhi-Meerut Expressway (three packages out of four packages) and Eastern Peripheral Expressway (six packages) are in execution stage with awarded ci

The NH-334-B that starts from Bahalgarh in Haryana and connects Bagphat- Meerut in Uttar Pradesh has been entrusted to the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for its development and maintenance. At present, this is a 2-lane NH standard road in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh states.

Detailed Project Report (DPR) for Bahalgarh-Haryana/Uttar Pradesh border stretch has been taken up by NHAI.

DPR from the Haryana/Uttar Pradesh border to Baghpat-Meerut stretch is at initial stages of preparation of Inception Report by UP PWD.

DPR for the Delhi-Sharanpur stretch is also at initial stages of preparation of Inception Report by the UP PWD, said Radhakrishnan in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha 3 August 2017.

Meanwhile, work on 397 National Highways of 14,974 km, costing Rs.1,29,704 crore, are in various stages of construction. These are connecting districts and major cities in Jammu & Kashmir, Haryana, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chandigarh and Delhi.

But there have been delays in some of these projects mainly due to problems in land acquisition, utility shifting, non-availability of soil or aggregates, poor performance of contractors, environment, forest or wildlife clearance, ROB & RUB issue with Railways, public agitation for additional facilities, arbitration/contractual disputes with contractors etc.

Nevertheless, regular meetings are held with project developers, State Governments and contractors in headquarter as well as in Regional Office.

To expedite completion of these projects various steps are also taken which include streamlining of land acquisition & environment clearances, exit for equity investors, premium re-schedulement, close coordination with other Ministries, revamping of dispute resolution mechanism, frequent reviews at various levels etc.

This information was given by Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways and Shipping Shri Pon. Radhakrishnan in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha today.

Separately, NHAI has started the process of developing wayside amenities at 183 locations along national highways.

The amenities will provide rest and refreshment for highway commuters during their journey with car, buses and trucks parks, restaurant/food court, dhaba, fuel station, minor repair shop, rest rooms for passengers, dormitories for drivers, kiosks for sale of miscellaneous sundry items.

The facilities, with more than 5 acres of area, will be named “HIGHWAY VILLAGE” and facilities on smaller area less than 5 Acres will be named “HIGHWAY NEST”.

More than 1,000 such stop-overs will be developed, each at a distance of 50-km.

Bids for 35 sites have already been invited out of the 183 planned, said Minister of Road Transport & Highways Nitin Gadkari. Bid due dates are 21 August 2017 and 27 October 2017.

NHAI is also in the process of inviting bids for 30 more sites by the end of August 2017, and for the remaining sites by end of September 2017.

NHAI has called for private participation on franchise basis for these developments.

Private land owners/persons having minimum land area of more than one hectare abutting the national highways can join hands with NHAI under the brand name “HIGHWAY NEST” to develop wayside amenities as a franchise of the authority.

Gadkari has urged individuals owning land along national highways to come forward and participate in the endeavour.

Expression of interest from persons having land abutting national highways for development of wayside amenities is being invited from 4 August 2017 onwards, said NHAI chairman Deepak Kumar.

Bids submission is due on 21 September 2017 in the office of the respective Regional Offices of NHAI. fii-news.com

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