ঢাকারবিবার, ১৯শে মে, ২০২৪ খ্রিস্টাব্দ

Chittagong is on the verge of a new beginning

Staff Reporter | Ctgpost
সেপ্টেম্বর ৮, ২০২২ ৬:২৪ অপরাহ্ণ
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• 8 km of expressway to be opened by February
• Vehicles to be charged for movement
• 70 percent of work completed
• Project extended till June 2023 at various times
• CDA wants one more year
The construction of the first elevated expressway in the port city of Chittagong was supposed to be completed by 2020. That time has passed, then two more years are about to end, its construction is still not finished. However, it is hoped that this expressway will be partially opened for Chittagong residents by February.

70 percent of this development project, one of the largest in Chittagong, has been completed. The Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) said that 8 km of expressway from Patenga to Nimtala will be opened by February 2023.

The CDA has also said that once the traffic starts on the elevated expressway, toll will have to be paid. However, the toll rate is yet to be determined.

Chief Engineer of CDA Kazi Hasan bin Shams told Dhaka Post that the work of Chittagong Elevated Expressway is about 70 percent completed. The 8 km section of the elevated expressway from Patenga to Nimtala will be opened for vehicular traffic by February 2023. I am working with this goal.
With the opening of the tunnel, the traffic pressure in Patenga area will increase. It may cause traffic jam. In order to avoid traffic jam in Patenga area, we are thinking of opening 8 km of elevated expressway by next February.
CDA Chief Engineer Kazi Hasan bin Shams
He also said that the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Tunnel will be launched by the end of this year. We have looked at alternative communication systems for tunneling. So that those who will come towards the city via Patenga through the tunnel, they can come to Agrabad area using the elevated expressway. You can take the elevated expressway from Patenga and get down at Nimatoli. As a result, the port area of ​​Chittagong can be easily reached from South Chittagong through the tunnel. Aimed at quick launch of 8 km of elevated expressway around the tunnel. With the opening of the tunnel, the traffic pressure in Patenga area will increase. It may cause traffic jam. In order to avoid traffic jam in Patenga area, we are thinking of opening 8 km of elevated expressway by next February.

Chittagong Elevated Expressway Project Director Mahfuzur Rahman told Dhaka Post that more than 300 pillars of the elevated expressway have been completed. Apart from this, other ancillary works of the elevated expressway are also progressing. As soon as the tunnel opens, we are working towards the goal that vehicles can move through the expressway. However, the work of elevated expressway from Dewanhat to Lalkhanbazar has not yet started. The design of the elevated expressway over the railway line is yet to be finalised.

Mentioning that the work of this part is in progress, he further said that the permission has not been received from the Railways. The design of this section will be finalized after receiving final approval from the Railways.

According to CDA sources, when the Elevated Expressway project worth Tk 3,250,830,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,00,000,000,000,00,000,00,000,00,000,00,000,00,00,000,00,000,00,000,00,00,00,000,00, whom whom he has raised in the year 2017, has been approved at the Ecnec meeting on 11 July 2017. The length of the four-lane elevated expressway from Lalkhan Bazar to the airport will be 16 and a half kilometers. Although the construction work started in 2018, the Prime Minister inaugurated its construction on 24 February 2019. The duration of the project was subsequently extended up to June 2023 at various times. However, in view of the application from CDA, the working hours have been extended by one more year till June 2024.

In addition, CDA proposed to the ministry to increase the expenditure of Tk 1 thousand 513 crore to Tk 4 thousand 764 crore 55 lakh. The Ministry of Housing and Public Works formed a committee headed by an additional secretary to determine the rationale of increasing the expenditure by one and a half thousand crore taka. The committee increased the project cost by Tk 1,300 crore and sent it to the Planning Commission with a proposal of Tk 4,550 crore. It has not passed yet.
If the toll is charged on the elevated expressway, the purpose for which the elevated expressway is being constructed will not succeed in decongesting the traffic.
Professor of Civil Engineering Department of Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology. Mahmud Omar Imam
The project duration and cost are increasing due to various reasons including the objection of Chittagong Port, waiting for land acquisition, non-permission of traffic department, design objection of Lalkhan Bazar section, said the stakeholders.

Engineer Kazi Hasan bin Shams also told Dhaka Post that the project could not be completed on time in the face of objections from various organizations after the start of the work. There were many problems including changing the design due to objections. As a result, both time and cost increase. The project has been extended by one year till June 30, 2024.

According to CDA sources, the elevated expressway will have 16 ramps and loops. Experts have also questioned whether short distance vehicles will be encouraged to use this elevated expressway if the toll is collected.

Professor of Civil Engineering Department of Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology. Mahmud Omar Imam told Dhaka Post that if the toll is taken on the elevated expressway, there will be traffic jams at two places. The first traffic jam will be on the road ahead of the rise of the elevated expressway. Another traffic jam will be over the flyover. There will also be traffic jams where the toll will be collected. The purpose of constructing this elevated expressway to ease traffic congestion will not succeed.

He also said that the elevated expressway will have many fluctuation points. As a result, toll plazas should be installed at all the transfer points. This will cause traffic congestion on main roads and flyovers.
After the construction of the elevated expressway, maintenance including electricity bills will cost at least Tk 20 lakh per month.
Expressway Project Director Mahfuzur Rahman
Qazi Hasan bin Shams said about the toll, after the completion of the elevated expressway, the toll will be collected from the vehicles. And maintenance of elevated expressway will be done by Chittagong Development Authority. CDA will do the maintenance along with toll collection. After the opening of this elevated expressway, there will be no traffic jam in Chittagong city.

Mahfuzur Rahman, project director of the expressway, said that after the construction of the elevated expressway, maintenance including electricity bills will cost at least 20 lakh taka per month. If the toll is not collected, where will this money come from? How and how much toll will be collected will be decided before the construction is completed and fully operational.

KM/NF