Over 12 years after it was launched, the Kundli-Manesar-Palwal Expressway, a 136-km green and smart road intended to ease traffic by bypassing Delhi on its western border, is set to become fully operational on 2 October.
Also called Western Peripheral Expressway, it connects Kundli with Palwal. In April 2016, the 53-km stretch of the expressway connecting Palwal and Manesar, which was completed at a cost of Rs 457.81 crore, was opened.
It passes through five districts – Sonepat, Jhajjar, Nuh, Gurugram and Palwal and connects four national highways – Delhi-Ambala-Amritsar, Delhi-Agra-Varanasi, Delhi-Ahmedabad-Mumbai and Delhi to the India-Pakistan border at Attari.
The 134 km-long Easter Peripheral Expressway was opened to traffic in May this year by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Since it became operational, there has been a reduction of around 20 per cent trucks entering Delhi. Together, both expressways form a 270 km-long beltway around the National Capital Territory.
This news comes just days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, unhappy with the delay, asked Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha to review the WPE project and make sure it is completed by the end of September. He had also chaired a review meeting on the project on 29 August, reports say.
The project was conceived during the Prime Ministership of late Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 2002 and was to be completed by 2009. However, like most other infrastructure projects, the expressway continued to hang fire during the 10-year rule of the Congress government led by Bhupinder Singh Hooda in Haryana and the United Progressive in the Centre between 2004 and 2014.
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