ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif is likely to inaugurate Margalla Avenue by the end of this month as the road is being given final touches.

Sources in the Capital Development Authority (CDA) said the project was expected to complete in a week. They said the civic agency was planning to get the project inaugurated by the prime minister.

More than 90pc work has been completed and the remaining minor work is being carried out now. Asphalt has also been laid and the process will be completed in one week,” said an official of the CDA.

He said the civic agency was making all-out efforts to complete the project by the end of this month.

According to PC-I of the 10.4-kilometre-long road being constructed at a cost of Rs2 billion from GT Road to D-12, the project was supposed to be completed in June last year. Initially, it was a two lanes road, however, the scope of work was later extended to three lanes on each side. Therefore, the contractor was given a six-month extended time which lapsed on December 30.

However, according to sources, there was a proposal to extend the project for three more months, but the CDA management asked the contractor - FWO - to complete it within one month.

CDA Chairman retired Capt Mohammad Usman a few days ago uploaded a video of the newly-constructed road on social media and stated: “A new gift for the people of Islamabad and those coming to Islamabad - very soon.”

The portion of Margalla Road, under the said contract, starts from Grand Trunk Road and ends in D-12 from where after construction of an interchange and a small portion of 11th Avenue it will be linked with Khayaban-i-Iqbal.

Recently, the CDA had started construction of the road from D-12 to Khayaban-i-Iqbal as well to connect Margalla Avenue with other roads of the city.

The CDA started construction work on the 5.5-km-long road from D-12 (ending point of Margalla Avenue) to link it with Khyaban-i-Iqbal at E-11 and 11th Avenue.

The project worth around Rs3.9 billion, which also has five culverts and an interchange in E-11, is supposed to be completed in six months. On Dec 21, the CDA issued work orders for the project.

This project was awarded to National Logistics Cell (NLC) under section 42(F) of Public Procurement Authority (PPRA) rules. Under this section, tenders are only invited by government firms.

Once completed, the road will be a direct link for traffic to and for GT Road via Margalla Avenue.

CDA officials said once Margalla Avenue is completed, traffic load on Srinagar Highway will also reduce.

Published in Dawn, January 21st, 2023

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