A meeting of the National Highway district authority convened here on Saturday has decided to explore the expansion potential of the 98-km stretch of the National Highway 47 passing through the district.

The meeting, convened under the chairmanship of District Collector P. Venugopal, also decided to check out how land could be acquired for the highway expansion. Whether the highway could be made into a four-lane way with a width of 45 metres, or whether four-laning would be possible within the existing 30-metre width too would have to be found out, officials said.

A five-member team was constituted to discuss complaints on the absence of safety measures to help people cross the highway at important junctions and also to see where such measures could be put in place.

Compensation packages for traders who would lose their land during expansion and the prospects of an elevated highway in places where there were too many trade centres and shops, would be examined.

Thuravoor, Kalavoor, Ponnaveli and the Alappuzha Bypass region were among the spots where an elevated highway and related feasibility studies were being contemplated, officials said, adding that a public awareness campaign to educate the public on the highway expansion and alignment of the proposed project would also be launched.

K.C. Venugopal, MP, A.M. Arif, C.K. Sadashivan, P. Thilothaman, B. Babu Prasad and A.A. Shukoor, MLAs, Municipal Chairman P.P. Chitharanjan and representatives of the three-tier panchayat system were present along with a host of officials from departments concerned.