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Centre suggests developing township along proposed ghat ring road in Goa, ET Infra


<p>Zuari Bridge</p>
Zuari Bridge

PANAJI: When he visited Goa last month to inaugurate the second phase of the new Zuari bridge and take a review of highway works in Goa, minister for road transport and highways, Nitin Gadkari, asked state officials to explore developing a township along the proposed ring road in Goa’s ghats area.

The ministry of road transport and highways (MoRTH) has already appointed a consultant to conduct a study and prepare a detailed project report for the construction of a ring road along Goa’s ghats. The study will be carried out at a cost of Rs 10 crore. The ring will allow interstate traffic to travel past Goa without entering the state’s roads. This proposal had been approved by Gadkari during his visit to Goa in December 2022 based on a suggestion by chief minister Pramod Sawant.

During his recent visit, Gadkari asked state authorities to consider developing a kind of township when this ring road comes up, with different facilities for tourists and entertainment spaces. It was suggested that this could develop into an attraction that could draw tourists.

“We are presently awaiting the consultant’s report. We will have to see if developing a township is feasible, as it is the ghat section and the terrain may not be flat for such a project. Land availability will also have to be checked and how many trees may be lost. We are already facing opposition in other areas like Karmal Ghat for highway works, as there are protests against the loss of trees,” said an official.

The ring road has been planned to allow traffic from Karnataka and Maharashtra to travel around the Western Ghats at Goa without adding to the state’s traffic congestion. The circular bypass road is proposed to be built from Patradevi to Dodamarg and from Keri to Mollem and Collem. Many states have such roads already.

Goa hopes that its hinterland tourism and rural economy will also be boosted by connecting all five of the state’s border checkposts with the circular road. It feels that the ring road will also help in achieving the government’s plans to turn Manohar International Airport at Mopa into a logistics hub.

The state already has one of the highest vehicle densities in the country at 45%, and accident frequency is also high. Therefore, the CM’s concern was that if more vehicles travelling via Goa enter the state, it will only add to congestion and the occurrence of accidents.

  • Published On Jan 9, 2024 at 07:56 AM IST

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