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Plan to build 10-lane ultramodern expressway

Published : 17 Feb 2020 09:01 PM | Updated : 25 Oct 2020 02:58 PM

The government is moving ahead with a plan to build an 87.18-km at-grade 10-lane ultramodern expressway alongside the existing Joydebpur–Mymensingh highway for faster communication between the capital and Mymensingh. Roads and Highways Department under the Ministry of Road Transport and Bridges wants to implement the project, first of its kind in Bangladesh, through Public-Private Partnership (PPP).

Authorities in South Korea, which have earned fame by building road infrastructures in South Asian countries, have already expressed interest in financing the project. Officials of Roads and Highways Department (RHD) say that following the implementation of the project, it will be possible to reach Mymensingh from Dhaka within one and an half hours.

Many developed countries are now switching to ultramodern expressways, the most modern road connectivity, with the aim of developing faster and better road communication system. RHD sources said the department has already collected necessary data and its senior officials recently visited the project area for the construction of the expressway.

An official of the department said major activities can be started after getting nod of the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) meeting. "We’ve informed South Korea about the project," he said, adding that the project would be financed through PPP on a government-to-government (G2G) basis between Bangladesh and South Korea.

The official said the authorities in South Korea have promised to finance the project and that people from investment companies are expected to visit the project area in Bangladesh within a few days. In addition, the Dhaka-Chattogram and Dhaka-Sylhet highways are being planned to be upgraded to 10-lane expressways.

The RHD official said there are expressways in different countries, including India, South Korea, Malaysia and Sri Lanka. RHD Additional Chief Engineer Shishir Kanti Raut said, “The 87.48-kilometre road in the existing four-lane Joydebpur-Mymensingh is now planned to be upgraded to 10-lane expressway. In addition to the existing four lanes, emergency lanes will be constructed with two barriers having 10 feet wideness.”

Only ambulances, security cars, VIPs and any emergency vehicles will operate in the emergency lanes. An underpass will be built in every 2-3 kilometres and there will be interchanges to get in and out of the other side roads on the expressway, he mentioned.