KONA TRUCK TERMINAL IN LIMBO
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| Calcutta | Published 23.12.00, 12:00 AM
Calcutta, Dec 23 : Calcutta, Dec 23: The much-talked about truck terminal project at Kona, off the Bombay Road, has been given a quiet burial. Instead, West Bengal Transport Infrastructure Development Corporation - which would have implemented the project - will team up with Howrah real estate developer Ram Ratan Chaudhry as a minority partner to set up a truck terminal and commercial complex on a 250-acre plot at Dhulagar. Located off the National Highway 6, the terminal will accommodate 2,000 heavy and 1,800 light commercial vehicles. The transport infrastructure corporation will pick up 10 per cent in the project, to be executed by the Calcutta-Mumbai Truck Terminal Limited. State transport minister Subhash Chakraborty will lay the foundation stone for the project today. The Kona truck-terminal project, one of the oldest planned by the Calcutta Metropolitan Development Authority, was conceived in the early 70s to ease transport bottlenecks in Howrah and Calcutta. The World Bank had agreed to fund the project to be carried out under the Congress government headed by chief minister S S Ray. But land acquisition and bureaucratic inertia delayed implementation during the past three decades before it was buried. Other factors which prejudiced the project were its distance from the railway terminal and the fact that it was proposed right on the National Highway. Over 6,000 trucks enter the city daily, creating congestion and pollution in Howrah, and the main commodity wholesale market in Burrabazar. The land for the Dhulagar truck terminal project, less than 20 kms from Calcutta on Domjur Road, off the NH 6, is owned by promoter, Chaudhry, and the site is close to two railway goods terminals, Abada and Sankrail stations, on South Eastern Railway. The blueprint drawn up envisages an entire range of facilities for transport operators and businesses.