Bhubaneswar: In a major relief to city commuters, the state government along with the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has finally begun construction of the much-awaited flyover at Khandagiri junction on National Highway (NH) 16. However, the flyover in Jatni is still hanging fire giving nightmares to the people.
The flyover on NH 16 at Khandagiri junction was a long-standing demand of the people but due to flaws in its design and various other administrative reasons, the authorities had failed to take up the work in the past. The construction has finally begun now and officials are planning to open the flyover by June next year.
The flyover, to come up at a cost of Rs 115 crore will be 2 km long and have independent service roads and slip roads. Local vehicles will use the service roads, while vehicles from the highway will use the slip roads. This will allow them to enter and exit the highway safely.
A slip road gives entry or leave to a motorway or dual carriageway. It is intended to help people increase their vehicle’s speed when joining a carriageway or more often a motorway. A service road is a subsidiary road running parallel to the main road, giving access to houses, shops or businesses.
“The construction of the flyover began with a new design, in line with the Indian Road Congress rules. The bridge will have four lanes apart from the service and slip roads. The construction has started and we hope to open the flyover by June 2020,” said Chief General Manager NHAI Bhubaneswar, R.P. Panda.
Khandagiri junction on NH 16 is one of the busiest and deadliest junctions of the city. It is also one of the identified black spots of the city that has claimed 32 lives and injured several between 2016 and 2018. Thousands of vehicles of through the square every day.
“The flyover will give us great relief. I prefer not to use the junction during peak hours due to the traffic congestion. At other times, it can be deadly because of the speeding vehicles. The flyover was a necessity here and I hope the administration will complete the work soon,” said Anant Mohapatra, a commuter.
While the construction of the Khandagiri flyover has brought a smile on the faces of the people, the incomplete flyover in Jatni on the same road is a cause for dismay. “The flyover is desperately needed. Moreover, the construction which is nowhere near completion gives rise to other problems such as waterlogging on the highway,” said Sambit Mitra, a Jatni resident.
Aditya Ray, Chief Engineer Roads, Public Works Department, told Odisha Bytes that the delay is due to some cost and other local issues. “I will go through the file and see what needs to be done to put the construction of the flyover back on track. It is almost nearing completion and will be opened in the next six months,” said Ray.