New Baneshwor Overpass : Flyover proves a bridge too far
KATHMANDU, AUG 20 -
The government’s plan to build a flyover at New Baneshwor as a pilot project has got nowhere due to lack of funds and design delays. As per the timetable, a detailed project report (DPR) was to have been completed and a global tender issued by mid-July.
New schemes like constructing overpasses have been put on ice after the government unveiled a one-third budget last month with all the funds earmarked for continuing old projects.
Officials of the Department of Roads said that even though the Ministry of Physical Planning, Works and Transport Manage-ment had pledged to provide Rs 50 million for calling a global tender and starting construction, no money has been received till date. The department is the implementing agency of the project.
“Since the flyover is a new project, no funds have been allocated in the budget of the current fiscal year,” said a high level official at the department. The official added that the consultant had also taken a long time to complete the DPR which subsequently delayed finalisation of its design.
Soil Test and Aviyaan Consulting, the consultant hired by the government, recently submitted the DPR of the flyover to the department. However, the department has stated that many things in the detailed report including the estimated cost were not clear. The department plans to hold a high-level stakeholder meeting in a bid to finalise the design and get inputs.
Saroj Pradhan, senior divisional engineer at the department and chief of the flyover project, said that they would call a stakeholder meeting within a week to discuss the flyover plan and finalising the design. “Even if the DPR has been prepared, we need to discuss the proposed flyover further with the stakeholders.”
The design has envisaged a four-lane flyover and pre-stressed concrete structure. Once it is finalised, the government can call for tenders for its construction. However, department officials said that implementing the project without a full budget would be difficult as there is no separate heading for spending government money on the flyover. When asked about the lack of resources for the flyover project, secretary at the ministry Tulasi Prasad Sitaula said that there would be no money problems because of the one-third budget. He added that they could manage funding if the department applies for it.
The ministry has planned the flyover at New Baneshwor as a pilot project to provide guidelines for other projects. Earlier, the government had planned to build four flyovers or underpasses at Old Baneshwor, Tripureshwor, Thapathali and Kalimati junctions in a bid to reduce traffic congestion and allow motorists to reach the airport faster.
Posted on: 2012-08-20 08:31