Thiruvananthapuram: In order to bring out better quality roads, the Public Works Department is busy preparing a road policy. The approach paper of the draft road policy was recently presented before the MLAs. The road policy will have a decade action plan for the roads maintained by PWD. One of the key objectives of the road policy is to develop a Core Road Network, which could meet the connectivity and traffic requirements of the future.
The road policy also aims at long-time maintenance of roads, mobilising market resources for joint development of road projects and develop strategy to improve water-air-rail-road connectivity. Considering the suggestions made by the MLAs, PWD officials had prepared a revised approach paper and submitted to the PWD Secretary for approval.
The action strategy includes development of State Highways (SH) and Major District Roads (MDRs) into two-lane carriageway with paved shoulders. Identified stretches, especially in urban areas, will be upgraded into four-lane divided carriageway. Bypasses and grade separators are planned for urban agglomerates and rest of the MDRs will be developed as connecting links.
‘’The Core Road Network aims at bringing connectivity to major cities, district headquarters, tourists spots, interstate roads, backward areas etc. The commuters will have access to quality, all-weather roads within 10 km. The roads will meet the standards set by Indian Road Congress,’’ said a senior PWD official. The entire project is estimated to cost Rs 35,500 crore. PWD plans PPP model for raising Rs 15,000 crore and public investment for the rest Rs 20,500 crore.