Margalla Road Construction Update

According to those who travel the area regularly, the Margalla Road project is progressing at a Good Pace. Prime Minister Imran Khan began construction of the high-profile project in the federal capital in April 2021, it is scheduled to be completed in a few months. Margalla Road, a major artery in Islamabad, is part of the master plan. It runs in the foothills of the Margalla Hills and connects the capital with the GT Road and the M1 motorway, providing greater access to the city and fast connections to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Punjab. 

The project was started by the government of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) in 2009 but was left incomplete due to priority issues and a dispute between the contractor and the Capital Development Authority (CDA). After a decade-long delay, the project began in April after the Prime Minister and the Federal Cabinet declared it “national security” and exempted the CDA from the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority Act (PPRA). This avoided any bidding and the project was awarded directly to a government company.

An official told The News that a key argument presented to the federal cabinet was that signing a contract with a key government contractor will speed up the project.

This is the same Margalla Road that the Rawalpindi Ring Road (R3) was supposed to flow on in Sanjgani, Islamabad. Construction on Margalla Road has been Started. Once completed, Margalla Road is unlikely to reduce traffic on Srinagar Highway and GT Road to Sanjgani, but it will greatly reduce travel time and save high-cost commuters. Those who have to come to Islamabad daily from Taxila, Attock, Fatehjang, and the adjacent areas and those who come to or from Peshawar will particularly benefit from Margalla Road.

A few months before the revitalization of Margalla Road was publicly announced, sectors of Islamabad adjacent to the road project saw heavy buying of land by large numbers of people at low prices as sellers, mainly those who exchange the land. for the land acquired. By the CDA, they were not aware of future developments. When the project was officially launched, prices skyrocketed. It turned out that those who invested were aware of the project prior to its launch. A vendor told The News that a few months before the announcement of the Margalla Road construction, he had sold 500 square feet of residential property in Sector C for just Rs. 3.6 million to cover his son’s education expenses. However, the price jumped to Rs 18 million after the project was officially launched.

Meanwhile, a report says the CDA has approved the revised target of the proposed portion of Margalla Road known as the Bhara Kahu Bypass. The Army’s Chief Engineering (E&C) department gave the CDA a lecture on the alignment of the 7.4 km long beltway. Previously, the E&C department prepared a lineup, which was contracted by the CDA but had not consented as part of it was on private land near Kot Hatyal. Actually, the first stretch was about 2 km, but CDA had to buy land and pay compensation to people for their built property. To avoid the acquisition of new land and subsequent legal disputes, the CDA decided on a revised route, which is 2 km longer but runs through state lands.

As part of the revised route, the highway will be built on state land from its starting point near QuaidiAzam University to Satra Meel. After detailed planning, a project proposal must be completed, followed by construction work. Margalla Road, according to the Islamabad Master Plan, begins in the Sangjani / GT Road area and ends at Murree Road near Bhara Kahu after having passed the foothills of the Margalla Hills.

 
 

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