KATHMANDU, Oct 19: The government formally opened the newly constructed Maitighar-Bhadrakali road section for public use on Thursday. This is expected to ease traffic movement around Singha Durbar, the country´s main administrative centre.
Minister for Physical Planning, Works and Transport Management (MoPPWTM) Hridayesh Tripathi formally opened the road for public use. “It has been opened for light vehicles and pedestrians for now,” Tulasi Prasad Sitaula, secretary at MoPPWTM, said.
During the Maoist insurgency. the Nepal Army had restricted the movement of people and vehicles in a parallel road section cutting through army headquarters premises, citing security reasons. However, it opened a 550 meter new stretch of parallel road linking Thapathali to Bhadrakali in a bid to do away with traffic congestion.
According to Secretary Sitaula, the government plans to widen the new road from 10 to 14 meters in the near future. “We will blacktop the road within six months and make it four-lane with pavements on both sides for pedestrians,” Sitaula said.
The government estimates that the blacktopping of the road could cost Rs 80 million. “There will be a small bridge on the road stretch. Nepal Telecom has agreed to bear Rs 15 million of the total blacktopping cost,” Sitaula said.
The road, which is graveled now, can be used one way from Maitighar to Bhadrakali. “It will be made two-way after the widening," Sitaula added.
MoPPWTM officials said they would begin the process of road-widening after the Tihar festival.
The Department of Roads (DoR) is to work on widening and blacktopping the road. The gravelling was done by the Nepal Army.