Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Shipping Nitin Gadkari has directed NHAI and the State Government to identify important tourist spots on the route and facilitate to create wayside amenities on the lines of Ocean Highway in USA. This facility once built will add to the tourism value of whole area and shall be helpful in creating employment for the local people. NHAI is preparing a DPR for 4-laning of coastal highway (Kerala Karnataka Border to Kannur from Km 17/200 to Km 148/000 of NH-17 (New No.NH-66) under NHDP Phase-III and 4 laning of Kannur to Vengalam from Km 148/000 to Km 230/000 of NH-17. Minister has also directed State Government to submit the proposal of 1200 crore under NHO and DPR of 200 km NH length so that same can be expedited and awarded in this financial year. Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Shipping Shri Nitin Gadkari, reviewed National Highway works with senior officers of PWD, NHAI and Ministry during his visit to Cochin. Contractors/Concessionaires, Independent Engineer and Consultants were also present in the review meeting.
Minister reviewed the following three ongoing projects:
i) 6-laning of NH-66 (Old No.47) Vadakkanchery-Thrissur (Tunneling Both Side) under NHDP Phase –II.
ii) 4-laning of NH-66 (Old No.47) of Kazhakkotam-Mukkoila (km.0/000 to Km.26/500) under NHDP Phase-III; and
iii) Mukkola to KL/TN Border section (km 26.500 to Km 43.000) under NHDP Phase-III.
In regard to project of 6-laning of NH-66, the Minister reviewed progress of tunnel being built and has advised the concerned officers and contractors to expedite tunnelling work by putting additional resources, machineries and start the work from both ends of the tunnel. Minister has directed contractors and officers to complete the work by March, 2017. Minister also reviewed the projects on Thalassery-Mahe Bypass (NH-66) and Kozhikode Bypass (NH-66). It has been informed by the Additional Chief Secretary, PWD, Government of Kerala that the land is available for taking up the work of Thalassery – Mahe Bypass and Kozhikode Bypass in the project stretch of 4 laning of Kerala- Karnataka Border to Kannur from Km 17/200 to Km 148/000 of NH-17 (New No.NH-66) under NHDP Phase-III and 4 laning of Kannur to Vengalam from Km 148/000 to Km 230/000 of NH-17 (New NH-66) under NHDP Phase-III. The Minister has directed that work on these works should be immediately awarded for construction.
While reviewing the project of 4-laning of NH-66, the Minister has advised that as was requested by Chief Minister, Kerala, and was agreed by the Minister, a Vehicular Under Pass (VUP) shall be provided and revised design of the airport connectivity ramp shall be prepared by the NHAI and contractors. The Minister has also directed the State Government to provide all necessary support in terms of land acquisition and payment of long pending dues of tolls to Kerala State Road Transport Corporation. The Minister has also directed State Government Principal Secretary (PWD) to regularly review land acquisition process and expedite necessary approvals by the State Government.