Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde and deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis undertook an inspection drive of Samruddhi Expressway’s Nagpur to Shirdi stretch.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate this 529 km long section on 11 December.
The 701-km long expressway will reduce the travel time between Nagpur and Mumbai by half, from 16 to eight hours.
Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde and deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis on Sunday (4 December) inspected Samruddhi Expressway’s Nagpur to Shirdi stretch.
The work on the 529 kilometres long section between Nagpur and Shirdi has been completed. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate it on 11 December. The remaining stretch between Shirdi and Mumbai is estimated to be completed in six months.
Both the CM and deputy CM of the state undertook an inspection drive of the expressway.
With Fadnavis in the driver’s seat of a four-wheeler, both the leaders started their journey towards Shirdi from Nagpur.
While Shinde was seen occupying the front seat of the vehicle next to Fadnavis. Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) managing director Radheshyam Mopalwar and a few officials accompanied them.
In the first phase, there are toll plazas at around 20 exits of the expressway. Tolls will be levied according to the amount of travel.
To ease transport of agro commodities, 20 agricultural prosperity centres are planned near the expressway.
A free helpline has been made available in case of an accident on the expressway. 15 ambulances, 15 rapid response vehicles, 13 patrol vehicles will be ready on this highway to provide emergency help.
An expressway to prosperity?
The 701-km long expressway, built at the cost of Rs 49,250 crore, passes through 392 villages spread over 10 districts (Nagpur, Wardha, Amravati, Washim, Buldhana, Jalna, Aurangabad, Nashik, Ahmednagar and Thane).
The ‘Hindu Hrudaysamrat Balasaheb Thackeray Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg’ is a six-lane access-controlled highway. It is the second expressway in the state after Mumbai-Pune Expressway.
A new economic corridor will come up on the expressway route, and 14 districts will be integrated and connected to the port through this expressway.
When fully operational, the expressway will reduce the travel time between Nagpur and Mumbai by half, from 16 to eight hours.
The greenfield project was first announced in 2015 by the BJP-Shiv Sena coalition government. The land acquisition began in July 2017, PM Modi laid the foundation stone in December 2018, and construction work started in January 2019.
The project is being led by the state infrastructure arm Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) and is being developed under the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) model. For the project, the MSRDC has raised debt worth Rs 28,000 crore.
The construction work of the 701 km long Mumbai–Nagpur Expressway was divided into 16 packages, with work awarded to 13 contractors, including Afcons Infrastructure, Larsen & Toubro (L&T) and Reliance Infrastructure.
The total cost of the expressway project, including land acquisition and engineering, is estimated to be Rs 55,332 crore.