Bridging the gap
Most highways serving as nodes to Delhi-NCR need to be widened to improve connectivity, but contractors are unwilling to bid for them
Commuters from Ghaziabad to Delhi are required to be masters of the art of driving because of the state of the roads. The narrow fourlane National Highway (NH) 24 remains clogged with traffic, and like the NH8, has potholes, boulders and cranes (being used for ongoing road repair work) making the stretch extremely dangerous. Those hoping for a quick solution to the problem have a long wait ahead, if the recent non- response by contractors to a bid for a highway project is any indication.
When bids opened for seven highway projects covering 830 km and costing ₹ 17,368 crore, as per a build-operate-transfer (BOT) model in this financial year (2014-15), no bidders turned up. The projects included the Delhi- Meerut Expressway (NH24 and 58) and the Eastern Peripheral Expressway. The real estate growth of the NCR has been along the following highways leading out of Delhi:
NH1 - Kundli has become a major micro-market with the Education City and projects by Ansal, TDI nearing completion
NH 58 – Major development is concentrated around Raj Nagar
“Two of these projects would be rebid again on BOT and if no response is received, they would be taken up for execution under the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) mode. Other five projects are also being taken up for execution under this mode – with execution period estimated to be three years,” says a senior official of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), on condition of anonymity.
“The total project cost of Delhi- Meerut Expressway Extension and the area is expected to develop as a suburb of Ghaziabad
NH 24 – Wave City and Crossings Republik hold potential as integrated developments
NH 8 – Manesar, Bhiwadi and Neemrama have emerged as satellite developments to Gurgaon (NH24 and 58) is ₹ 6,600 crore and Eastern Peripheral Expressway is ₹ 4,800 crore,” he says.
The award target set by NHAI is 5,000 km this fiscal, which includes projects to be awarded via BOT and EPC. Since the market response to the BOT mode in the recent past has not been positive, if the projects taken up on this mode do not elicit the required response, they will be taken up on EPC, the official states.
BOT is an agreement between a private company and a governmental body. The agreement commits the private company to build and operate a facility such as a highway for a period of time and then transfer the ownership to the government.
EPC is the ter m used to describe contracts in which an engineering company assumes full responsibility for a project — engineering, material procurement and construction. The contractor then delivers a functioning facility or asset to the client or the government.
It has been proposed that the stretch from NH24 up to UP Gate will be widened to 14 lanes from the present four, and the road between UP Gate and Dasna will be eight-laned. The next phase of the expressway will be built on a new alignment from Dasna to Meerut, a six-lane stretch joining the Meerut bypass.
There are several affordable projects located along the NH24.
ATS Greens Gautam Budh Nagar Sector 20
Sector-61 Sector-62 Sector-93
Alpha-I (Greater Noida)