CHATTOGRAM: The construction work on the elevated expressway from the city’s Lalkhan Bazar intersection to Chattogram Shah Amanat International Airport will start in full swing this month.
The project’s primary work, including soil test at different points, has already been completed, said sources at the Chattogram Development Authority (CDA), the implementing agency of the mega project.The project is expected to be completed by 2022, they said.
The Chattogram city outer ring road, under construction on the existing city protection embankment, will be opened for traffic in March to reduce the pressure of vehicles during the construction of the expressway, project officials said.
The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) approved the mega project, first of its kind in Chattogram, in July 2017.
The project involving Tk 3,250.84 crore will be implemented with the government’s fund.
CDA initiated the project aiming at developing smooth communication between the Chattogram city and south Chattogram districts and upazilas, reducing distance and expense for commuters in the city and easing movement to and from the Chattogram Port and Chattogram Shah Amanat International Airport.
CDA, earlier, constructed two flyovers connecting the Bahoddarhat and Lalkhan Bazar areas in the city. After implementation of the expressway, the two ends of the city will be connected through flyover and elevated expressway.The 16.5 Km elevated expressway will be a four-lane one with a total width of 16.5 metres. It will have 24 ramps in nine points from the Lalkhan Bazar to Airport. With the ramps, the total length of the expressway will stand at 28.5 Km.
The ramps will facilitate entry and exit at Tiger pass, Agrabad, Barik Building, Nimtala Biswa Road, Customs, CEPZ, Karnaphuli EPZ, Kathgarr, Sea-beach and Airport intersections.
A total of Tk 2,511.91 crore will be spent for the main structure while Tk 231 crore for reconstruction of footpaths, said sources in the CDA engineering department.
Contacted, CDA Chairman Abdus Salam told the daily sun that it is very difficult to reach the Chattogram port and Airport from other areas in the peak hours.
Lack of direct communication with the country’s premier seaport stands on the way of faster movement of the goods-laden vehicles to and from the industrial areas in Chattogram and other districts, he said.
“Besides, it takes several hours to reach the airport from other ends of the city. But, after implementation of the project, the people will be able to reach the airport-end from any other parts of the city within 30 minutes,” hoped the CDA Chairman.
Traffic congestion at the main thoroughfares will also be reduced to a great extent as the expressway will have ramps at important intersections, he said.
The new project will ensure easy and developed communication, and create opportunities for industrialisation and foreign investment further, Salam added.
Mentionable, CDA opened the 6.8km ‘Akhtaruzzaman Flyover’ from Muradpur to Lalkhan Bazar to traffic on June 16 in 2017.
Construction work of the project started from CDA Avenue in front of N Mohammad Plastic Company at Muradpur immediate after the project site was handed over to the contractor - Max-Ranken (JV), a local and Chinese joint venture company, on February 22 in 2015.
The inclusion of a loop and ramps increased the length of the flyover to 6.8 Km from the previous 5.2 Km.
A ramp in front of Nasirabad Boy’s School and the 70-feet high loop connecting the Baby Super Market on Bayezid Bostami Road and the GEC intersection have reduced traffic congestion significantly in the busy Sholoshahar Gate No.2 area.