Acute traffic congestion and accidents have been the order of the day on the stretch
The feasibility report on widening the congested 16-km Edappally-Aroor NH Bypass on NH 66 into a six-lane corridor is expected to be ready by December.
A consultancy firm, which was appointed by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to ready a detailed project report (DPR), is readying the feasibility report. The firm will suggest ways to add one more lane in four-lane portions by redesigning components of the 45-metre-wide NH Bypass, like vacant space on service roads, which can be added to the main carriageway, sources said.
A detailed software-aided survey is being carried out as part of the feasibility study. The firm has submitted an inception report to the NHAI. Land acquisition, if needed, will be minimal, since clearing of encroachments will in itself increase the width of service roads in most areas, they added.
The Edappally-Vyttila stretch is largely four-lane, although it carries around one lakh passenger car units daily, traffic that requires minimum eight-lane width. This has been causing acute congestion and accidents. The Vyttila-Aroor stretch has a few six-lane portions thanks to widening of the carriageway and new bridges built over a decade ago.
The NH Bypass caters for intra-city, inter/intra-State vehicles, which include national permit, container, tipper, and tanker lorries. This is apart from over a dozen pedestrian-dense junctions on the stretch. Most of them lack signages, pedestrian crossing lines, high-mast lights, and other warning measures. This often causes pedestrian fatalities.
The NHAI has already mooted an elevated six-lane highway on the 15-km Aroor-Thuravur NH corridor, which forms part of the 220-km Ramanattukara (Kozhikode)-Thuravur (Alappuzha) stretch.
The ₹1,300-crore elevated corridor is considered the practical way to overcome hassles associated with land acquisition on the congested and accident-prone NH stretch.
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