Kathmandu, June 2
Even as the central government is yet to decide on when to start construction of the much-talked about Outer Ring Road project, the Province 3 government has already made plans to build a Ring Road on the outskirts of Kathmandu Valley.
In fact, the Province 3 government has already allocated budget for the project and has stated that the Ring Road will touch 30 provincial constituencies of Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur districts. The project, which will be of a total length of 135 kilometres, has been categorised as a ‘Province Pride’ project.
As per the Province 3 government, it has allocated Rs 12 million for the feasibility study of the project in the ongoing fiscal year.
Minister for Economic Affairs and Planning of Province 3, Kailash Prasad Dhungel, informed that the programme is a highpriority project for the provincial government. “We have plans to complete the detailed project report (DPR) by next fiscal year and will start construction works by coordinating with the federal government.”
Dhungel further added that the government has already started to conduct the DPR of a 25-km stretch of the Ring Road from Gokarneshwor Municipality to Kageshwari Manohara Municipality.
As per officials of Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Development of Province 3, the new Ring Road will be 15 metres wide — 7.5 metres on either side from the central point of the road.
Meanwhile, the Federal government also has plans to construct the 71.93-kmlong Outer Ring Road in Kathmandu Valley but works related to it have been halted since long. The Outer Ring Road project has been affected due to issues related to land acquisition and the road’s alignment.
As per Bhai Kaji Tiwari, development commissioner of Kathmandu Valley Development Authority, which is responsible for the development of Outer Ring Road, central government is currently in process of appointing a new consultant company to conduct a new DPR of the project. “We plan to change the existing alignment in some areas where population density is high and where the land acquiring process has been mired in controversy.”
As per Tiwari, KVDA has proposed to build underpasses so that the existing settlements are not affected.
“The current DPR is almost outdated, so we need to conduct a survey again to determine the exact number of households that will be affected by the project.”
As per the initial study report in 2008, the construction cost of the Outer Ring Road project was expected to hover around Rs 70 billion. However, since the price of land has skyrocketed in the intervening years, the project construction cost is expected to stand at around Rs 226 billion.
A version of this article appears in print on June 03, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.