Monday, June 22, 2015
From Print Edition

ISLAMABAD: The National Highway Authority (NHA) has constructed and rehabilitated about 1,275 kilometres roads all over the country during last five years.

Of the total, the Authority constructed and rehabilitated 70 kilometres roads in Punjab, 235 kilometres in Sindh, 124 kilometres in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), and 846 kilometres roads in Balochistan.

According to the NHA sources, the Authority plans to embark on various programmes for construction of new roads, bridges and improvement of existing infrastructure and launched some projects through public private partnership and is seeking local as well as foreign firms for investment. The sources said that the NHA had completed three major river bridges during last five years, three major bridges on the Indus River while one each was under construction on the Ravi and the Chenab.

Moreover, five bridges over the Indus and two over the Ravi have also been also planned, they said. The sources said that the NHA had already constructed three segments of Trans-Pakistan Motorway Network viz M-1 (Peshawar-Islamabad), M-2 (Islamabad-Lahore) and M-3 (Pindi Bhattian-Faisalabad) on a virgin corridor bringing remote areas on mainline and boosting economic activities. It was now constructing M-4 (Faisalabad- Khanewal-Multan). They said that the government had now planned to develop approximately 2,395 km long China-Pak Economic Corridor (CPEC) connecting Gwadar to Kashghar (China) and also decided to build Karachi-Lahore Motorway (KLM) 6-lane controlled access.

The KLM is part of CPEC Phase-I and work has already been initiated on Burhan-Havelian Expressway and basic work for KLM to serve initially the Economic Corridor to ensure optimal utilization of existing network. Its strategic objectives also include opening hinder -land areas and will bring more population into stream of benefits, which in turn will change the social complexion of people living around this corridor.

With regard to major upcoming development projects, the sources said these include construction of Karachi-Lahore Motorway (1,147 kilometres), improvement/up-gradation of Thakot-Havelian section of KKH (120 kilometres), construction of Lahore Eastern Bypass (13.5 kilometres), construction of Lower Topa-Kohala 4-lane Expressway (48 kilometres), construction of highway from Muzaffarabad to Taobult in Neelum Valley, construction of tunnel in Leepah valley, up-gradation of Jhaglot-Skardu Road, S-1 (163 kilometres), Qilla Saifullah-Loralai-Waigum Rud section of N-70 (124 kilometres), Zhob-Mughalkot section of N-50 (78 kilometres) and approach road to new Islamabad International Airport (31.5 kilometres).

The sources said the government allocated Rs 111.56 billion for NHA’s development projects in PSDP 2014-15 and the amount included Rs.35.133 billion foreign currency and Rs.76.430 billion in local currency components. Some significant ongoing projects are Faisalabad-Multan motorway (M-4), Quetta-Chaman Section of N-25 (120 km), Peshawar- Torkham section of N-5 (45 kilometres), Burhan-Havelian Expressway (59km) E-35, Gwadar-Turbat-Hoshab section of M-8 (200 km), Hoshab-Nag- Basima-Surb section (459 kilometres) N-85, Lowari Tunnel and Access Roads 8.

Sehwan-Ratodero ACW (N-55), Sukkur-Jacobabad (N-65), Re-alignment of KKH at Attaabad, Flood Emergency Rehab Project, Peshawar Northern Bypass (E-2) and Overlay and Modernization of M-2.