| Road construction department officials check out the model of Ganga Driveway at a city hotel on Thursday. Picture by Nagendra Kumar Singh |
Residents will have something more to feel good about apart from seeking the blessings of Goddess Durga on Saptami.
On Friday, when pandals would be thrown open for public viewing of Durga idols, the work on the ambitious 21.5-km-long Ganga driveway would also begin. The pathway would connect the west-east ends of Patna.
The foundation stone of the project, which would be executed at a cost of Rs 2,234.46 crore, would be laid on Friday. The highway would bring down the commuting time drastically between the two ends of the city.
Chief minister Nitish Kumar will lay the foundation stone at the starting point, Digha Ghat near rail-cum-road bridge, at 11.30am. This would be the western-end of the ambitious project.
Road construction department secretary Pratyaya Amrit said: “I am happy that the driveway dream has finally come true. It is the mother of all projects. The road would be a matter of great pride for Bihar.”
The proposed driveway along the southern banks of the Ganga, being developed on the reclaimed land of the river in Patna, would reduce travel time between Digha Ghat and Didarganj in the east from two hours to just 25 minutes. It would also ease the traffic congestion on the city road network.
The driveway will have facilities such as pedestrian lanes, landscaping, truck lay-bys, bus bays and shelters, traffic aid post, medical aid post and vehicle rescue post.
Hyderabad-based Navayuga Engineering Company Ltd has been awarded the driveway construction work. It is being constructed under the engineering procurement construction (EPC) mode. Under the mode, the government provides the funds and the agency, which takes up the work, is paid according to the construction carried out by it.
“There would be no compromise on quality and deadlines. If the company doesn’t complete the work within the stipulated time frame (four years), action would be taken according to the terms and conditions mentioned in the agreement,” Amrit said.
C. Sridhar, the managing director of Navayuga, said the company would complete the project much before the August 22, 2017, deadline.