The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) is all set to miss the October deadline for completing the six-laning of the 82.5-km Chilakaluripet-Vijayawada section on NH-5.
The project, taken up under National Highways Development Project – Phase V, began in May 2009 and was scheduled to be completed by October 2011.
But going by the pace of current works, the project might be delayed by a year, said senior NHAI officials.
Bypass road shelved
With the NHAI deciding to shelve the proposal to lay a bypass road near Chilakaluripet, an issue that delayed the project for a year, the works would be expedited, NHAI Project Director C.S.N. Murthi said.
The NHAI was bogged down by uncertainty over the bypass road, the legal litigations, and an overwhelming public opinion against the proposal.
Finally, the NHAI decided to take the final call on the proposal in view of the delay and escalating costs.
The district administration completed land acquisition and handed over the possession certificates of areas in 22 villages, including 17 villages in the Guntur revenue division and five in Narsaraopet division.
The six-laning of the highway on a Build Operate and Transfer basis was suggested in 2007.
In June 2008, an agreement was signed by IJM Corporation and Infrastructure Development Finance Company Limited.
The total cost of the project was Rs. 675 crore. The concession period was for 15 years, including construction period of two and half years.
The expanded stretch, with adequate provision for bridges, flyovers, vehicular underpasses, road over-bridges, pedestrian's underpasses, automatic traffic counters, variable message signs, and CCTV telephone cameras, is set to convert the highway into an express highway.
It also provides for 152 km service roads on both sides of the project.
Work on 82.5-km Chilakaluripet-Vijayawada section began in 2009