The State government must hand over construction of a flyover at Edappally Junction to Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) since it has estimated Rs 86.70 crore as the cost against National Highways Authority of India’s (NHAI) estimate of about Rs. 500 crore, P. Rajeev, MP, has said.
Moreover, the DMRC has a track record of completing projects on time and they are hopeful of constructing the flyover having metro pillars at the centre in 18 months time. The agency has proposed a four-lane flyover, which when compared with NHAI’s six-lane one, requires far less land acquisition. The DMRC’s study says that only 0.57 hectares of land has to be acquired for the flyover and only 12 buildings will be affected. The NHAI would take more time to build the structure because of heavy land acquisition. Moreover, it would impose toll based on inflated construction cost, he said at a press meet on Tuesday.
Mr. Rajeev said the Comptroller and Auditor General had repeatedly taken note of the inflated project cost of BOT projects based on which exhorbitant toll was collected. “Members of the public must pressurize the government to build the Edappally flyover so that it is cost effective and fast. It must be remembered that traffic snarls and congestion slow down economic growth too since both city residents and inter-district commuters use the NH Bypass.”
“Instead of zeroing in on a solution and speeding up the construction of four flyovers along the NH 47 Bypass, the State government has engaged an agency to do a study about three proposals that were mooted to decongest the stretch. The NHAI is yet to ready a comprehensive and feasible report on the flyovers, three years since a study began. Its draft report says the flyovers will cost Rs. 1,450 crore.”
Mr. Rajeev blamed government agencies for not intervening when shopping malls were built in close proximity to the NH Bypass, worsening traffic congestion.