The inauguration of the Sohna elevated road, with Union minister of road transport and highways Nitin Gadkari as the chief guest, will not happen on Monday morning as planned earlier, according to officials from the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). Commuters may have to wait longer for relief from traffic congestion along Sohna Road since officials do not have any clarity yet on whether the first package of the road project will still open on Monday.
On Friday evening, officials received intimation about the postponement of the inauguration from the minister’s office. “It appears there has been some conflict with the minister’s schedule. As a result, the programme has got postponed for now,” said a senior NHAI official. The first package includes a 9km-long stretch between Rajiv Chowk and Badshapur. Earlier on April 1, officials opened the second package extending between Badshapur and Sohna to commuters. Monday was supposed to be the inauguration day of the first package and the formal opening day of the entire project. With the event delayed, there is no clarity now on the opening of the first package.
“We have not yet received any confirmation from senior government officials on whether we can open the road on Monday. The construction work is complete, so the stretch is ready,” said the NHAI official.
The work on the 21km-long elevated road started in 2018, with officials expecting to complete it in 25 months. The pandemic lockdowns, the delays in shifting of utilities, the repeated bans on construction due to high pollution levels, and the collapse of a 40-metre spine of the road in August 2020, however, led to unforeseen delays in the project.
The civil construction work for the entire project required Rs 1,300 crore, but the overall project cost, including utility shifting and land acquisition expenses, is Rs 2,000 crore.
The project aims at easing the traffic movement between Gurgaon and Alwar, reducing the three-hour travel time to less than two hours. It will also allow commuters travelling between Gurgaon and Sohna to bypass several congested junctions such as Vatika Chowk. Furthermore, the elevated road will connect to the under-construction Delhi-Mumbai expressway, providing a critical link to the stretch for commuters in Gurgaon. The expressway will run via Haryana, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Gujarat and is likely to be ready in 2023.
Although the Sohna elevated road was initially supposed to have only one access point other than its start and end points, at Ghamroj, officials last week confirmed two more entries.
Source : TOI