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VPT readies DPR for road project

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Visakhapatnam: The Visakhapatnam Port Trust (VPT) is now looking at a major road project providing connectivity between Ayyappa junction and Sabbavaram in the city. The detailed project report is likely to be completed in the next couple of months by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI). Earlier, the VPT bagged two railway connectivity projects under the Union government’s flagship Sagarmala programme.

The mega road project as per initial conservative estimates is expected to cost more than Rs 500 crore. It involves elevated corridors in certain stretches. This will ensure that traffic originating from the port will bypass the city roads.

“The port connectivity road will be extended to provide a road from Ayyappa junction to Sabbavaram. The detailed project report is being conducted by the National Highways Authority of India. We hope the DPR will be completed in a couple of months. The report will be submitted to the Union shipping ministry for funding under the Sagarmala programme,” a senior port official said.

The modalities for funding the project will be worked out once the DPR is prepared. “Once the project is ready, the entire port traffic will bypass the city,” he added.

Pointing out that vehicular traffic is increasing in the city, another VPT official said, “As the VPT has expanded its capacity to nearly 100 million tonnes, we expect a steady increase in cargo traffic in the next four to five years. As of now we are handling about 60 million tonnes, but we need to provide a smooth cargo movement in order to avoid bottlenecks. If we have the connectivity road in place, then VPT will not have to face problems like the Chennai port.”

Meanwhile, the VPT commenced work on the Rs 90 crore project to convert two-lane road from PCR Junction to the flyover, which is about km long. “Around Rs 20 crore is funded by the shipping ministry and an equal amount is given by the NHAI. The remaining amount is being taken up from external borrowings. The levelling work has already started,” the official added.

The VPT was recently awarded two rail connectivity projects worth Rs 38.71 crore including a Rs 16.75 crore project for providing direct connectivity between ore exchange complex and western sector joining at NAD curve and another for Rs 9.28 core for connecting dead end line at north of reception and dispatch yard to eastern grid.

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