NHA revives dualisation of Kahuta-Rawalpindi road

ISLAMABAD - The National Highway Authority (NHA), after a delay of over four years in launching the dualisation project of Kahuta-Rawalpindi road on political grounds in the previous government, has once again started the process to secure services of a contractor for the package-II of the project.

The initial procurement process for the said 28.4km long project was initiated in 2017 on the directions of the then prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, who was also the elected representative of the same constituency where the project is located.

The project was divided into two packages for its early completion and procurement was started. Two different bidders ZKB and SMADB were declared lowest bidders for the package-I and Package-II of the project respectively but the contract was awarded to SMADB only.

However, after the change of government in 2018, the project along with several others was put on back burner and later it was excluded from the Public Sector Development Programme on political grounds.

One of the lowest bidders, SMADB approached the court to get authorisation for the project from the Planning Commission because it was stopped by the previous government of PTI but it could not get desired results.

Recently after making comeback to the power by Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz, the project was once again included into the PSDP 2022-23 by the federal government.

Resultantly, NHA has once again revived the project and luckily SMADB also consented to complete Package-II of the project on the same terms and conditions agreed in 2018 despite massive inflation in market rates.

NHA has given the contract to construct package-II to SMADB on previous rates and it has mobilised the machinery at site as well. On the other side, NHA has started the process to engage a new contractor for package-I and called proposals for pre-qualifications of the firms.

The project is being executed by NHA as deposit work of the government of Punjab. The total cost of the project is Rs13.01 billion.

Under the project, the dualisation and improvement work of existing 2-lane Rawalpindi-Kahuta road from Kaak Pul interchange on Islamabad Expressway to Kahuta (on Azad Pattan road) would be carried out.

At present the road is 6 to 8 meter wide but now it would be converted into 4 lanes with 7.3m wide carriageway on either side that would be separated by placing New Jersey Barriers.

The project also includes construction of a new 4-lane flyover at Sihala railway line crossing on Sihala Bypass while geometric improvements of the existing road including a stretch of 5km existing road section from G T Road to Kaak Pul would also be carried out.

It is pertinent to mention here that improvement of existing Kaak Pul interchange would also be made under this project.

Meanwhile, acquisition of 1,752 kanals of land as Right of Way (ROW) varying from 30m to 35m at various sections starting from Kaak Pul Interchange to Kahuta for dualisation of existing roads is also included in the project.

According to PC-I, the project would be completed in 14 months and is proposed to be fully funded through federal PSDP.


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