National Highways Authority To Develop More Than 600 Wayside Amenities

National Highways Authority To Develop More Than 600 Wayside Amenities(Representative Image) Mumbai -Agra National Highway near Kasara Ghat in Maharashtra (Abhijit Bhatlekar/Mint via Getty Images)
Snapshot
  • Wayside amenities will be developed every 30-50 km of highways and expressways to improve commuter experience.

In a major initiative to improve commuting experience on national highways for both passengers and truckers, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) will develop world-class wayside amenities at more than 600 locations across 22 states in the next five years, out of which 130 is targeted for development in 2021-22.

NHAI has already invited bids to develop 120 such wayside amenities.

As per the plan, these amenities will be developed every 30-50 km of current and upcoming highways and expressways.

The amenities will include numerous facilities for passengers such as fuel stations, electric charging facilities, food courts, retail shops, ATMs, toilets with shower facility, children play areas, medical clinics, village hatts for local handicrafts etc.

Keeping in view the specific requirements of truckers, separate ‘truckers’ blocks’ will be developed with large amenities that will include truck and trailer parking, auto workshop, truckers’ dormitory, cooking and washing area, toilets with shower, medical clinics, dhabas, retail shops etc.

The facilities such as electric charging stations will help in promoting use of electric vehicles, thus, reducing pollution. The amenities will also promote local economy by generating employment opportunities and help local people to market their unique produce/handicrafts etc, at village hatts developed at the facilities.

NHAI will develop these amenities across the country with a combined area of over 3,000 hectares. These will offer huge opportunities for investors, developers, operators and retailers.

Currently, NHAI is offering wayside amenities on public private partnership model for development and operation on existing highways.

All upcoming greenfield/brownfield national highway projects will be provisioned to have wayside amenities and logistic parks. NHAI has started land identification and monetisation plan for development and real estate consultants have been engaged for designing of the amenities after studying the local suitability.

These wayside amenities will not only go a long way in making highway travel more convenient for commuters but also will provide adequate facilities for rest and refreshment to highway users.

Arun Kumar Das is a senior journalist covering railways. He can be contacted at akdas2005@gmail.com.


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