Hyderabad: In a major infrastructure boost, the Centre has cleared the proposal for construction of a 334-km Regional Ring Road (RRR) that would connect all the districts in the State with Hyderabad.
Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari confirmed the approval to a TRS MPs delegation led by party floor leader Nama Nageshwara Rao in New Delhi on Friday. The State government has agreed to bear 50 per cent of the Rs 13,000-crore RRR project that would come up beyond the existing Outer Ring Road (ORR), and is expected to play a major role in the economic development of the State.
Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao proposed the mega project in 2017, and the State government sent necessary proposals to the Centre seeking permissions and funds to take up the project. Besides the Chief Minister, several Ministers and MPs consistently pursued the project with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other Union Ministers. The RRR will be developed on par with international standards, connecting Sangareddy, Narsapur, Toopran, Gajwel, Jagdevpur, Bhongir, Choutuppal, Ibrahimpatnam, Chevella and Shankarapalli.
Besides developing infrastructure, the State government is also keen on decongesting the core city of Hyderabad by promoting development of integrated townships outside the 160-km-long ORR and within the RRR.
In fact, Municipal Administration and Urban Development Minister KT Rama Rao proposed to encourage development of these integrated townships with at least 50 acres each within the 30-40 km wide strip between the ORR and the RRR, offering a variety of incentives from the State government. The idea is to create employment opportunities and housing along with other facilities for shopping and entertainment between the two circular roads and reduce congestion in the city.
In 2017, the Centre had even issued a gazette notification for taking up construction of 166 km of the RRR as SH-161 AA under the first phase of the RRR connecting Sangareddy, Toopran and Choutuppal, following which a Detailed Project Report (DPR) was also submitted by the State government. Later in 2019, the Union Road Transport and Highways Ministry raised queries over the financial viability of the project plan submitted by the State government and suggested a fresh study. In response, the State government submitted all details addressing the issues raised by the Centre. However, the project was kept on the back-burner despite repeated requests from the State government.
Nageshwara Rao also submitted a representation to Nitin Gadkari to issue notification for the 182-km stretch under the second phase of the RRR connecting Choutuppal, Shadnagar and Kandi. He also sought clearances for the alignments mentioned in the letters submitted to the Centre in January and August of 2018. “The State government will bear half of the expenditure for the RRR as promised by the Chief Minister. The project will not only provide smooth connectivity to Hyderabad from different parts of the State but also play an important role in connectivity of the Nagpur-Hyderabad-Bengaluru corridor and the Pune-Hyderabad-Vijayawada corridor,” the MP explained.
Further, the TRS MPs that included Manne Srinivas Reddy and Badugula Lingaiah Yadav also took up issues pertaining to pending projects sanctioned to the State. The Union Minister is said to have given his approval for expansion of the 31.8-km Kodad-Khammam National Highway to four lanes under the Bharatmala Pariyojana programme. The State government has already completed the land acquisition and is awaiting forest clearance to invite tenders. Gadkari also responded positively to the requests for completion of several highway projects as promised under the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act.
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