Widening project hits roadblock

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The project to widen the Mehrauli-Mahipalpur Road from Andheria More to Masoodpur has come to a standstill.

The road, which is expected to provide an alternative route to the airport and Gurgaon, had got financial clearance from the Delhi government in November last year.

While first phase of the project from Andheria More to Masoodpur has got embroiled in controversy over tree-cutting along the stretch, allegedly by the Public Works Department (PWD), the second phase from Masoodpur to NH-8 has made no headway because of encroachment.

The work of widening the 3.5-km stretch from Andheria More to Masoodpur began in February and was supposed to be complete by now, according to the deadline set by the government. “The case in this regard is going on in the National Green Tribunal. The next date of hearing is in September,” a PWD official said.

A Vasant Kunj resident had taken PWD to court in March, alleging that the agency did not have the requisite clearance from the Forest department for felling trees. Following this, the work on the stretch was discontinued in May. The agency cannot start work on this stretch till NGT gives its final decision.

The estimated cost of this project is Rs 58.21 crore. This stretch, which now comprises four lanes, will be widened to eight lanes. It is 16 m to 30 m wide and will be widened to 75 m.

“The stretch from Masoodpur to NH-8 has a lot of encroachments and we have asked Delhi Development Authority for land records to determine what part of the land is with the government,” a PWD official said. According to sources, residents of the area have already shot down the plan, including the proposal of making a road on stilts.

The third phase of this project will involve creating a bypass to Mahipalpur. “This bypass of Mehrauli-Mahipalpur Road from Ryan International School to NH-8 near Shiv Murti will connect to the Dwarka Road. The alignment of this stretch has been finalised and will be taken up with Unified Traffic and Transportation Infrastructure (planning and engineering) Centre for clearance,” an official said.

Some residents of Vasant Kunj, meanwhile, claim that the condition of the road where work had initially been taken up has worsened with the project having been abandoned midway.

“Over the years, the traffic along the Andheria More stretch has increased drastically. This road needs to be widened to ensure smooth traffic movement. With the discontinuation of work, the road has been left in a mess. We want work on this project to start again at the earliest,” Amit Aggarwal, a resident of Sector-A, pocket B and C, Vasant Kunj, said.

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/widening-project-hits-roadblock/1154598/0

  

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