Under the project, 783 km of highways will be developed in various geographies by integrating eco-friendly and safe technology designs like industrial byproducts, local and marginal materials, as well as other bioengineering solutions.
To build safe and green national highway corridors, the World Bank and the Modi Government recently signed an agreement for a USD 500-million project. According to the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, the highway corridors will be developed in the states of Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh. This big infra project will enhance the capacity of the ministry in mainstreaming safe as well as green technologies, according to a PTI report. Under the Green National Highways Corridors Project, 783 km of highways will be developed in various geographies by integrating eco-friendly and safe technology designs like industrial byproducts, local and marginal materials, as well as other bioengineering solutions.
According to the report, this infra project will set new standards in the development of safe motorable roads. Besides the selected stretches in the above-mentioned states will also help improve connectivity and promote economic development. The transport infrastructure’s ultimate objective is to provide seamless connectivity as well as reduce logistics costs. The ministry further stated that many investment programmes have been launched by the Modi government to strengthen and improve logistics performance. Moreover, the Green National Highways Corridors Project will support analytics to map the freight volume as well as movement pattern on the NH network, point out constraints, as well as offer innovative logistics solutions.
According to the ministry, the project will support the government with an in-depth analysis of issues related to gender in the transport sector. Also, the project will help in generating job opportunities for women by training women-led micro-enterprises as well as women collectives to implement green technologies in the corridors of national highways.
In India, the national highways carry nearly 40% of road traffic. However, many sections/stretches of these national highways have weak drainage structures, inadequate capacity and black spots prone to accidents. The infra project will construct new pavements, drainage facilities and bypasses; improve junctions; strengthen and widen existing structures; and introduce road safety features. According to the ministry, it is imperative that the investments in infrastructure are climate-resilient. To this effect, under the project, disaster risk assessment of about 5,000 km of the NH network will be undertaken as well. The loan from the IBRD, worth USD 500-million, has a maturity of 18.5 years including five years’ grace period.