|Faisalabad: The National Highway Authority (NHA) has for provision of better quality highways, expressways and motorways throughout the country during the next five years.|
NHA sources said that some planned initiatives include construction of major new motorways, modernisation of trucking fleet with newer, more efficient, and environment-friendly vehicles; promotion of industrial clusters along highways/motorways, and establishment of warehouses, by the private sector, along the network.
NHA is also implementing a major national highway improvement program (NHIP), in phases, at a cost of Rs 20.25 billion. Out of total length of 836 km to be reconstructed/rehabilitated, work on 380 km has been completed. Out of the balance, 268 km would be completed by December 2008, and the remaining 188 km would be completed by June, 2009.
The program includes reconstruction and upgradation of Lahore-Gujranwala 6ection from 4 lanes to 6 lanes. A complete list of on-going and future projects is as under; which will be completed during next five year.
1. Improvement/Widening of KKH (Khunjerab-Raikot Section) (335km).
2. Realignment of KKH (Raikot-Sazin Section) (120 km).
3. Improvement/Widening of KKH (Sazin-Manshera Section) (258 km).
4. Manshera-Abbottabad-Hasanabdal Expressway (97 km).
5. Peshawar-Torkhum (51 km).
6. Peshawar Northern Bypass (34 km).
7. Underpass at Wah Gate No 1, Taxila-Hasanabdal Section.
8. Wazirabad-Pindi Bhattian Expressway (E-3) (100 km).
9. Hiran Minar Interchange (M-2) with link road.
10. Faisalabad-Khanewal Expressway (E-4) (184 km).
11. Khanewal-Lodhran Expressway (100 km).
12. Lodhran-Sukkur Expressway (385 km).
13. Ratodero-Sehwan (N-55), ACW (200 km).
14. Karachi-Hub-Dureji-Dadu Motorway (M-7) (270 km).
15.Karachi-Hyderabad Motorway (M-9) (136 km).
16. Jand-Kohat Notional Highway (N-80) (46 km).
17. Noshki-Dalbadin Section (N-40), Balochistan (165 km).
18.Gujranwala-Dina Expressway (100 km).
19. Chakdara-Dir, Kalkatak-Chitral (N-45) (120 km).
20. Four bridges over River Indus in Punjab and Sindh.
According to official sources, total NHA network of 11,485 km primarily consists of 'low capacity' roads. About 75 percent are two-lane (6.1 metres single carriageway); 20 percent are 4-lane divided highways (7.3 metres dual carriageways), and only 5 percent are 6-lane highways (11 metres dual carriageways).
Approximately 25 percent (or 2500 km) of NHA network is in need of rehabilitation. This results in very low number of travel trips, slow speeds and an unsafe driving environment. Commercial traffic running speeds are between 35 and 45 kph, and average trip speeds are around 25 kph--1/3rd of the average trip speeds in developed countries.
The present highway network is under strain because of rising traffic flow and a slow pace of increase in capacity. Consolidation, preservation and improvement of the existing highways are needed on urgent basis. A gradual extension of the network is also equally important to develop remote areas and to better connect major economic and social centres of Pakistan.