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Construction of Layyah-Taunsa bridge okayed

Construction of Layyah-Taunsa bridge okayed

ISLAMABAD: The National Highway Authority (NHA) has approved the construction of a 1.75km, four-lane bridge across river Indus linking Layyah with Taunsa at a cost of around Rs2.6 billion.

The approval was granted on Wednesday in an Executive Board meeting of the Authority at the NHA headquarters. Chairman Shahid Ashraf Tarar chaired the meeting.

Sharing details of the project, Mr Tarar said the bridge would provide the much-needed connectivity because, at present, there was no river crossing over Indus to provide link between the two cities. The two available links were D.I. Khan-Darya Bridge located 88km upstream of the proposed project site and Taunsa Barrage located 52km downstream of it. The city dwellers travel by road from Layyah to Taunsa or vice versa, covering a distance of about 100km to reach either of the two cities. Alternatively, boat/ferry service was available from either side of the river to carry the residents across the river. The ferry service takes almost 1.25 hours to reach from Layyah to Taunsa and vice versa.

The construction of the bridge would reduce the distance by up to 50km. Similarly, it would also facilitate traffic movement from east to west by providing link between Indus Highway (N-55) and Motorway M-4. The west bank of River Indus (Taunsa) would be connected with the provincial road network passing through the eastern side of the river through district Jhang, Faisalabad and Sheikhupura. The improved connectivity will uplift the socio-economic condition of these areas as well, the NHA chief said.

Published in Dawn, November 2nd, 2017

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