Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the Mumbai-Nagpur Samruddhi Expressway here on 11 December, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Saturday.
The 701-km long expressway, built at the cost of Rs 49,250 crore, passes through 392 villages spread over 11 districts.
The PM will inaugurate the 500-km stretch from Nagpur to Shirdi, while the remaining stretch of the expressway will be finished in the next six months, Deputy CM said.
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, Fadnavis said.
‘I feel that this expressway will bring ‘samruddhi’ (prosperity) to Vidarbha, Marathwada and the entire Maharashtra,’ he added.
The 701-km long Mumbai-Nagpur Expressway will connect 10 districts (Nagpur, Wardha, Amravati, Washim, Buldhana, Jalna, Aurangabad, Nashik, Ahmednagar and Thane), 26 talukas, and 392 villages of the state. 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.
The MSRDC has plans to develop 19 new towns along the expressway, of which it has prepared a development plan for eight. Out of these eight new towns, land acquisition for six will be completed by June next year. Every township developed under the initiative of Krushi Samruddhi Nagar is envisaged to be built in a land area of approximately 1000-1500 hectares. The new towns shall serve as the utility economic nodes for the food processing industry, integrated logistics, domestic food markets, education centres, skill development institutes, healthcare facilities, and commercial & residential housing.