NHAI to widen the highway stretch
It is official. There will be no realignment of the Mysore-Nanjangud road as the State government has decided against taking up the Mysore airport expansion project at this juncture.
Union Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways Sarvey Sathyanarayana said here on Friday that the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) decided to go ahead with four-laning of the Mysore-Nanjangud stretch of national highway 212 only after being apprised by the State government that it had no plans to expand the Mysore airport.
The airport expansion plan was put on hold all these years as the Mysore-Nanjangud road would have bisected the proposed extended runway. Hence the Airports Authority of India (AAI) wanted a realignment of the road.
The runway expansion was deemed necessary if the airport was to be commercially viable. The existing 1,740-metre runway can handle only short-haul ATR-type flights which are not operated by most commercial airlines. It was argued by stakeholders that the Mysore airport could be commercially viable only if the runway length was increased to around 2,400 metres to facilitate take-off and landing of wide-bodied planes such as Airbus and Boeing. But the State government was not ready to increase the runway length as it entailed acquiring nearly 170 acres of land at an exorbitant cost in addition to depositing Rs. 100 crore with the NHAI for development.
The expansion project made little sense when the existing airport — developed by the AAI at a cost of nearly Rs. 80 crore — was not being fully utilised, according to officials.
Hence the government gave the green signal for taking up highway-widening work without disturbing the present alignment.
The four-laning of the Mysore-Nanjangud road will be welcomed by the public in view of the traffic density and alarmingly high rate of accidents on the stretch.
NHAI norm mandates four-laning of highways with traffic volume of 8,000 passenger car units (PCUs) per day. The Mysore-Nanjangud stretch sees a traffic volume of 18,856 PCUs per day
Airport expansion plan grounded It entailed acquiring 170 acres of land
Airport expansion plan grounded
It entailed acquiring 170 acres of land